Raleigh, North Carolina. – No. 22 Virginia Tech Hokies (20-9, 7-5 ACC) head north to face No. 25 North Carolina State Wolfpack (21-10, 5-7 ACC) in a three-game conference series beginning Friday, April 5 at Doak Field in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Friday will mark the 172st time these two teams have played each other since 1907. Tech has a dominating record all time against the Pack, winning 105 of the 171 games played between the two teams. This series features two of the more even keeled teams in the ACC, both of which have not played the No. 1 ranked team in the country in The University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill.
Following Sunday’s game, NC State players and coaches will shave their heads in an effort to fundraise money for childhood cancer research. NC State will be wearing commemorative jerseys during the game on Sunday and those jerseys will be available to buy through auction at GoPack.com/shave.
Friday, 6:30 p.m. Carlos Rodon, LHP (3-2, 4.12) vs. Brad Markey, RHP, (3-2, 3.71)
Saturday, 1 p.m. Ethan Ogburn, RHP (2-2, 3.24) vs. Devin Burke, RHP (5-1, 2.61)
Sunday, 1 p.m. Brad Stone, LHP (2-1, 7.03) vs. Joe Mantiply, LHP (2-0, 3.32)
#25 – North Carolina State University (21-10, 7-5)
Carlos Rodon – The ACC Pitcher of the Year, and First team All – American will certainly be the Key factor for the Pack on Friday night when he takes the mound. Rodon needs to get ahead early in the at bat, and limit his walks to be successful against this Virginia Tech offense.
Trea Turner – Turner leads the team in on base-percentage .510, average .438 and homeruns 5, and looks to
continue swinging a hot bat.
Jake Fincher – Fincher leads the team in hits with 42 and is second in average .344. Fincher will also need to be aggressive on the base paths, forcing VT to make mistakes.
#22 – Virginia Tech (20-9, 5-7)
Virginia Tech Offense – Led by Chad Pinder, Mark Zagunis, Tyler Horan, and Andrew Rash, the Hokies offensive is explosive and can hit the long ball on any pitch. All nine starters have hit at least one homerun, and are among the leaders in homeruns in the nation, 14 to be exact. Chad Pinder leads the team with a .402 avg, followed by Zagunis .351, and Horan .333. All three of these hitters have hit four homeruns and drove in twenty five or more runs.
Brad Markey – I single out Markey as a key factor simply because he is the Friday night starter and is matched up against Carlos Rodon. In order for Markey to be successful he will need to hit his spots, and not just throw the baseball in the strike zone. Markey has given up 57 hits in 51 innings of work, an indication of leaving the ball over the middle of the plate; I would like to see Markey make some pitches out of the zone later in the at bat instead of trying to blow it past this Wolfpack line up.
NC State takes two out of three from Va Tech
Friday and Sunday’s games can be seen on ESPN3 and Saturday’s game can be seen on FSS.