After being swept over the weekend by the North Carolina Tarheels, the Demon Deacons baseball rebounded on Tuesday, April 4 against the Davidson Wildcats, scoring 15 runs and collecting 19 hits en route to a 15-5 win.
The Wildcats came to town on the back of an impressive series sweep of University of Rhode Island, during which the Davidson pitching staff allowed just five runs across three games.
Wake Forest came into the game looking to avenge an early-season 3-1 loss they suffered at the hands of Davidson on Feb. 20.
After three and a half innings, Davidson led Wake Forest 5-2, and it appeared as though the Demon Deacons could be in for a tight ballgame. The Wake Forest pitching staff buckled down, however, and the offense responded in a big way, scoring 13 unanswered runs in an offensive onslaught that proved insurmountable for the Wildcats.
Each of Wake Forest’s nine starting position players recorded at least one hit and six of the nine managed multi-hit games. The largest sources of production came in the fourth and seventh innings, in which the Demon Deacons plated four and eight runs, respectively.
In the fourth, freshman designated hitter Shane Muntz began the offensive production with a walk, and freshman left fielder Chris Lanzilli, sophomore right fielder Christian Long and sophomore shortstop Patrick Frick each doubled afterwards to drive in three runs. The Demon Deacons eventually took a 6-5 lead when Frick crossed home plate after a passed ball.
The Demon Deacons managed to hang another crooked number in the seventh inning, as the team scored eight runs on seven hits, which put the game out of reach for the Wildcats. Impressively, this offensive barrage did not require a four-bagger, instead, the Demon Deacons kept the line moving with singles and doubles.
On the pitching side, left-handed freshman pitcher Jared Shuster struggled in his start, completing just 3.1 innings and allowing four earned runs before being pulled.
Once the game was handed over to the bullpen, though, the Demon Deacons limited the damage, allowing just one run and three hits across the remaining 5.2 innings. Junior Tyler Witt and freshman William Fleming each turned in a scoreless inning of relief, combining for three strikeouts and just one baserunner, who reached via a walk.
Though the Demon Deacons have floundered in the ACC in tough series against Notre Dame and North Carolina, games like these suggest that, despite their inconsistencies, this young roster has tremendous upside and can improve its 12-18 record.
Wake Forest, losers of five of their last six conference games, will attempt to turn around their conference play when their ACC rivals, the Duke Blue Devils, come to town over the coming weekend.