Jeff Burke pitched 7.1 dominant innings and Justin Dunn recorded his first career save as Boston College defeated NC State, 3-1, at the New England Baseball Complex on Friday afternoon. The win was the first league victory of the season for the Eagles, who overall now have six wins.
The Eagles never trailed, taking a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning. Chris Shaw led off the frame with a single to the left side, advancing up to third on a couple of wild pitches by Pack Nine starter Cory Wilder. Donovan Casey delivered him home with a base hit through the right side to stake BC to a one-run lead.
BC opened it up to a three-run lead in the fourth. Nick Sciortino led off the bottom of the inning with a single to right center, then stole second. He moved up to third when Logan Hoggarth singled up the middle, but Mike Gambino sent the runner from third in an attempt to score. Sciortino was gunned down at the plate for the first out, giving BC a runner at first with one out instead of runners at the corners with nobody out.
It ended up not mattering, since freshman Mitch Bigras immediately tripled to right to bring Hoggarth home and put the Eagles up 2-0. It also chased Wilder from the game; NC State immediately summoned Joe O'Donnell from the pen to face Jake Palomaki. Palomaki singled up the middle, however, scoring the inherited runner from third to make it a 3-0 advantage to BC. O'Donnell got out of the inning with a little help—Palomaki was caught stealing at second and Johnny Adams flew out to end the threat.
BC starter Jeff Burke, however, was electric in shutting down the Wolfpack. Retiring nine in a row at one point, he allowed single hits in the fifth, sixth, and seventh before surrendering the game's only run in the eighth. Starting the inning, Burke surrendered a one-out walk before he was lifted in favor of the former starter Dunn. After the runner moved up a base on a passed ball, Brock Deatherage hit an RBI double to score the runner. Dunn settled down and got out of the inning, then slammed the door with a 1-2-3 ninth to pick up the save.
Burke (1-3) picked up his first win of the year by completing 7.1 innings. He was charged with the run (although it was an inherited run allowed by Dunn), giving up five hits while striking out three and walking two. Pitching in 29-degree weather with the threat of snow in the forecast, Burke induced ground ball after ground ball; 10 of the 27 batters he faced grounded out. Dunn finished with 1.2 innings, allowed just the hit to score the run with a strikeout and a walk.
For NC State, Wilder (1-4) was charged with the loss, giving up all three runs (all earned) in just 3.1 innings. BC tagged him for five hits, and he walked three while striking out two and delivering two wild pitches. O'Donnell pitched two winnings and gave up a couple of hits, striking out three and walking one. Travis Orwig and Joe Olczak combined for the final 2.2 innings, giving up a single hit (charged to Olczak) and striking out four.
The Eagles (6-12, 1-6 ACC) and Wolfpack (11-9, 2-5 ACC) will get back at it on Saturday in the second game of their three game series. The game will be played at the Northborough-based New England Baseball Complex's Field Two with first pitch at 1:30 PM.