After defeating UMass Lowell on Tuesday, the Boston College baseball team traveled to Winston-Salem, North Carolina this weekend to take on the Wake Forest Demon Deacons in an extremely important ACC series. The Eagles who sat one game out of the ACC Tournament prior to the series, needed to take at least one game against the ‘Deacs to give themselves an opportunity to keep pace in the race for the postseason. And that’s exactly what they did.
After falling to Wake Forest on Friday night by the score of 15-5, the Eagles rebounded in amazing fashion on Saturday to blank the Demon Deacons 8-0 behind an outstanding pitching performance by Dan Metzdorf, who scattered only four hits with 5 strike outs in six shutout innings, en route to the win. The biggest hit of the game came in the top of the seventh inning when, with the bases loaded and two outs, Mitch Bigras doubled to the gap, clearing the bases and busting the game open for the Eagles who led 6-0 after the hit. They would go on to score two more runs in the top of the eighth and close out Wake without allowing a run. Saturday’s game was only the second time all season the high-powered Wake Forest offense (seventh in the nation in scoring) was shutout. BC had a chance to take the series on Sunday afternoon and take a huge step toward making the post season, but instead fell to the Demon Deacons 5-2. The Eagles had their chances in the game. With starter Brian Rapp throwing well on the mound, Boston College loaded the bases twice in the game (once in the top of the second and once in the top of the ninth), but came away empty handed on both occasions. Gian Martellini, who had a great series overall, extended his career long hit streak to 12 games with a base hit on Sunday. The 1-2 weekend leaves the Eagles at 19-26 overall, with an 8-19 record in the ACC.
Although it would have been sweet to come away with a series win in Winston-Salem, the Eagles did what, at the very least, they needed to do: win a game. With one conference series remaining against Notre Dame in two weeks, BC will, more than likely, have a chance to play their way into the postseason. The question now becomes, will they need to sweep the Irish, or will winning two of three get them to Louisville? We’ll be coming out again this week with more in depth analysis of the Eagles postseason chances, but as it stands right now, with only a few ACC matchups this weekend because of exams, one of which (ND vs. Louisville) in the eighth inning and another (Pitt vs. GT) starting at 6pm, BC is still alive. Obviously, if you’re pulling for the Eagles to make the postseason, you need to hope Louisville hangs on to win today (they’re currently up by one in the eighth) and sweep the series against the Irish, and hope that Pitt takes care of Georgia Tech this evening and tomorrow (they’re playing Sat., Sun., Mon.) leaving the Yellow Jackets with only seven ACC wins (GT won last night), and still a game behind Boston College. Again, we’ll tackle the actual numbers and scenarios later this week after today’s games become official and the picture gets a little clearer, but the one thing that is an absolute certainty is that BC cannot lose the series to ND and get into the ACC tournament. They have to win the series, and likely sweep the Irish, to find themselves in the postseason.
Because of finals, the Eagles are off until next weekend, when they’ll take on the Quinnipiac Bobcats in a three-game series that includes a doubleheader on Saturday. We’ll have full coverage of that non-conference series and of the action around the ACC regarding the postseason, later this week.