UNC Overpowers Wake Forest With 10-Run Fifth

CHAPEL HILL – North Carolina erupted to score 10 runs in the fifth inning to earn its second straight series win with a 12-3 victory over Wake Forest at Boshamer Stadium on Saturday.

The Diamond Heels (31-18, 12-14 ACC) have won five in a row and eight of their last nine games. UNC defeated the Deacons in Friday’s series opener, 3-2.

Wake Forest (34-16-1, 11-14-1) tied the game at 2-all in the top of the second inning on a two-run home run by Paul Bennett.

Carolina blew the game open in the bottom of the fifth, sending 16 men to the plate and scoring 10 runs on seven hits.

“We’ve settled in on our lineup,” UNC Head Coach Scott Forbes said. “Throughout the order there is distribution and guys are having good at bats, and we haven’t had to rely on one guy carrying us.”
back to back RBI singles by Mac Horvath and Danny Serretti broke the tie, then Carolina loaded the bases after Alberto Osuna was hit by a pitch. Mikey Madej then delivered to bases clearing triple for a 7-2 lead.

Serretti finished the game with three hits with Horvath and Madej recording two each.

Thomas Frick followed with an RBI double and then moved around the base paths on a pair of wild pitches by Eric Adler. Hunter Stokeley and colby wilkerson, who led off the inning with a double, drew consecutive walks. A passed ball allowed both runners to move up a base and another wild pitch allowed Stokely to score the Heels’ eighth run of the inning.

Batting for the second time in the inning, Serretti slapped an RBI single through the left side and Osuna drew a two-out bases-loaded walk to cap the scoring.

Meanwhile, UNC starting pitcher Brandon Schaefer was patiently waiting to retake the mound, following a 48-minute half inning.

He responded by sitting the Deacons down in order in the top of the sixth and finished his outing by retiring six of the last eight batters he faced.

Schaeffer tossed a season-high 7.1 innings, the most innings thrown by a starting pitcher this season.

“It is hard when you sit for a while, that’s natural,” Schaeffer said. “I’m able to throw and stay loose. I’m honestly perfectly fine sitting if we are scoring runs.”

“I thought the biggest inning he had was after they scored two and we came back in and they made some phenomenal plays, then he shut them down in the top of the fifth,” Forbes explained. “When you work as hard as Brandon does, you’re able to [go back out after sitting for a long period] because you have your legs and your stamina.”

The Diamond Heels have scored 56 runs in their last seven games, blasting 12 home runs.

NOTABLE

• The Diamond Heels took all three series from its fellow Big 4 opponents (Duke, NC State, Wake Forest) for the first time since 2013.

• UNC won its seventh straight home games and improved to 26-5 at Boshamer Stadium this season.

• Serretti extended his career-long hitting streak to 23 games.

• Advance Honeycutt had his consecutive games with a home run streak snapped at four.

• Hourvth homered for the seventh time in the last 10 games with a solo home run in the third inning.

UP NEXT

North Carolina and Wake Forest will conclude their three-game series on Sunday, May 15, at 1 pm in Chapel Hill.

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