No. 1 Carolina Rolls Past Pack, 7-1
RALEIGH, N.C. -- Junior Kent Emanuel allowed one run in eight innings to earn his ninth win of the year Friday night as the top-ranked Tar Heels downed No. 6 NC State, 7-1, in Raleigh.
Emanuel (9-1) pitched through the eighth inning for the fourth consecutive outing Friday night as he scattered seven hits and matched a career high with nine strikeouts.
The Tar Heels (41-3, 19-2 ACC) provided Emanuel plenty of run support as Colin Moran connected on his 11th home run of the year in the first inning. Brian Holberton also hit a home run for UNC, while Michael Russell paced five Tar Heels with two more hits as he connected on three singles.
After watching a called strike to open his at bat, Moran connected on a Ryan Wilkins offering and sent the pitch to dead center field and over the outstretched arm of center fiedler Brett Williams to put UNC up 3-0.
The Wolfpack (33-11, 14-8 ACC) would threaten with two outs in the second inning as they loaded the bases for leadoff man Trea Turner but Emanuel was able to elevate a fastball and get Turner swinging to end the threat.
The Tar Heels would take control of the contest in the third as they pushed across two more runs.
A ground ball that looked to be a double play was hit to third but the relay throw to first sailed over the first baseman's head allowing Stubbs to score and push the Tar Heel advantage to 5-0.
Emanuel would cruise through the next three frames before the Tar Heels tacked on an insurance run via small ball.
Mike Zolk opened the frame with a single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Matt Roberts before a Chaz Frank ground out moved him to third base. A Brett Austin passed ball would allow Zolk to score from third and give UNC a 6-0 lead.
NC State would eventually get on the scoreboard against Emanuel in the seventh inning when the Wolfpack loaded the bases with nobody out.
Emanuel buckled down and got a sacrifice fly for out number one before striking out NC State's three and four hitters to end the threat.
Carolina added another run in the eighth thanks to a Landon Lassiter RBI double and Emanuel returned to the bump to strike out three more in the bottom half.
Trent Thornton tossed a scoreless ninth inning to seal up Carolina's 7-1 win.
The Tar Heels will go for their 10th series win of the year Saturday night at 6:30 p.m. as Benton Moss will take the mound against NC State's Carlos Rodon.