RALEIGH — N.C. State owed Vanderbilt one after Saturday night. The Wolfpack got a win back from the Commodores on Sunday.
The Wolfpack bounced back from a crushing loss to Vanderbilt on Saturday night with a 6-5 win on Sunday at Doak Field. The same teams will meet for a third time tonight (7 p.m.) with the winner moving on to face Florida, the No. 1 overall seed in the tournament, in the Super Regional.
N.C. State (42-18) kept its season alive with some clutch hitting by second baseman Matt Bergquist, who knocked in the winning run in the eighth inning. Bergquist, a junior, began the day with a .197 batting average. His single to right scored Brett Austin to break a 5-5 with the Commodores.
In State's 17-5 win over UNC-Wilmington earlier on Sunday, Bergquist went 3-for-5 with a home run, his first of the season, and six RBI. His batting average after two games on Sunday rose 25 points, to .222.
The Wolfpack scored six runs in three ACC tournament games but exploded for 47 runs in four NCAA tournament games.
The Pack's offense had no trouble finding runs early against the Commodores. State took a 5-3 lead into the seventh inning with single runs in the first, fourth and fifth innings. Trea Turner's two-run home run put two up in the third.
Pack designated hitter Ryan Mathews hit his ninth homer in 14 games to give State a 1-0 advantage in the first. Turner's homer kept carrying and carrying until leftfielder Jack Lupo ran out of room. Bergquist, who led off the inning with a walk, scored on Turner's fifth homer of the season to give State a 3-0 lead.
Vandy got on the board with an RBI-double by first baseman Conrad Gregor in the top of the fourth.
Starter Anthony Tzamtzis did not get out of the third inning in his previous two starts, ACC losses to Florida State and Wake Forest, but worked the first five innings without too much trouble.
But the Commodores rallied for two runs each in the sixth and seventh innings against Tzamtzis. Mike Yastrzemski tripled to drive in a run and scored in the sixth to cut State's lead to 5-3.
The Commodores evened the game in the seventh, and chased Tzamtzis, with a pair of manufactured runs. Connor Castellano, who scored the game-winning run on Saturday, singled and scored after a sacrifice bunt and a wild pitch.
Kemp walked, stole second, advanced on a fielder's choice and scored on an RBI-double by Anthony Gomez, to even the game at 5-5.
Vandy had no more comeback magic, though. Ryan Wilkins worked the final two innings, giving up only one hit, to give the Wolfpack the win.