When the book is closed on the 2014 college baseball season, the chapter concerning the Boston College Eagles will very much talk about a team capable of putting together great individual performances.
But the frustration of following this team is almost assuredly going to manifest itself early on; as good as BC looked yesterday in rallying twice to win in walk-off fashion, they were creamed for the second time this weekend as North Carolina scored seven times in the sixth inning and rolled to a 12-2 victory at Shea Field on Sunday afternoon.
The win improved the Tar Heels to 18-13 (7-8 ACC) while dropping the Eagles to 10-20 (2-13 ACC).
With the score tied at 2-2, UNC scored seven runs on five hits and two defensive errors in that sixth frame. Landon Lassiter led things off with a triple to center, scoring easily when Parks Jordan singled to right before BC recorded an out. Adrian Chacon then knocked a 1-0 pitch to second that Blake Butera dove and snabbed, but his throw to first was wide, allowing Chacon to reach first and pushing Jordan ot third. Korey Dunbar then hit a sacrifice fly to score the lead runner, in turn chasing starting pitcher Jeff Burke from the game. Steve Green came into pitch, but he surrendered a double to Tyler Ramirez that plated Chacon.
Green intentionally walked Michael Russell, but he hit Wood Myers to load the bases with one out. That also chased the lefty from the game in favor of right-handed reliever Bobby Skogsbergh. The first batter he faced, Sky Bolt, hit a fly to left that Logan Hoggarth misjudged, meaning Bolt reached and both Ramires and Russell scored. Bating around in the UNC order, Lassiter doubled to left to score Myers and Bolt, making it a 9-2 score.
The Tar Heels added three more runs later in the game, but by that time, the game was a blow out and the score of little consequence to the end result.
Offensively for the Eagles, both Chris Shaw and Joe Cronin had a couple of hits, with Hoggarth and Tom Bourdon recording RBIs. Nick Sciortino is the only other Eagle to record a hit (along with Hoggarth) as the team mustered only six knocks against the Tar Heel pitching staff.
Burke absorbed the loss to fall to 0-4 on the season. He was tagged for eight hits and four runs, three of which were earned, with three walks and three strikeouts over 95 pitches in 5.1 innings thrown. Green failed to record an out while giving up three runs, one earned, and one hit. Skogsbergh coughed up four runs on four hits in 1.2 innings. John Nicklas and Jesse Adams threw the final two innings without allowing a run.
For UNC, Zac Gallen threw five innings for the win, improving to 3-2 on the year while giving up all six hits and both runs to BC. Reilly Hovis recorded a multi-inning save by throwing the final four after struggling on Saturday. It was Hovis' first save of the year, and he did not allow a hit while allowing just one batter over the minimum - a walk to John Hennessy in the eighth.
It continued a very much Jekyll-and-Hyde team that's becoming a prevailing storyline over the past couple of weeks. After getting swept by Florida State, BC picked up wins against Connecticut and Massachusetts, earning them solid reputation points among teams in the northeast. But they looked lackluster in a bad loss to the Tar Heels on Friday, evening the score with an emotional come-from-behind walk-off win on Saturday. Today's loss considered the hot-and-cold trend, as BC looked extremely lackluster and beaten after the Tar Heels battered their pitching in the sixth inning.
BC gets a chance at some redemption this week when they host Dartmouth to finish out the "home stand" over the past month. They'll play the Big Green on Tuesday at Shea Field before heading to Harvard on Wednesday for the first round of the baseball Beanpot against the Crimson. That will set the stage for a three-game series this weekend against ACC newcomer Notre Dame in Indiana. It'll also be an interesting cross-section between BC and former head coach Mik Aoki, the current manager of the Fighting Irish (more on that this week).
Game time is set for 3 PM on Tuesday against the Big Green.