State Hammers Wake, 9-1

RALEIGH, N.C. - Carlos Rodon delivered yet another gem in possibly his final start at Doak Field at Dail Park on Friday night, as NC State baseball cruised to a 9-1 victory over Wake Forest.

The Wolfpack (28-20, 10-15 ACC) raced to a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the third before a pair of rain showers hit Raleigh, delaying the game for 75 minutes. Following the delay, State added a run in the fourth. Wake Forest (26-23, 12-13) scored its lone run in the seventh, before the Pack sealed the contest with a five-run seventh to set the final at 9-1.

Carlos Rodon (5-7) claimed the win in seven innings of work, holding the Deacons to one unearned run on four hits and a walk while fanning nine. The junior pitched on either side of the delay and looked unphased. After 43 pitches before the delay, Rodon sped through the fourth, fifth, and sixth with only 41 more. His final pitch at Doak Field registered 95 mph on the stadium gun and resulted in a swinging strikeout.

Rodon retired 10 of the first 11 batters he faced following the delay, at one point retiring nine in a row. His career strikeout total grows to 430 with the outing, good for fourth all-time in ACC history. His 111 strikeouts for the season ties Maryland's Jake Stinnett for the conference lead. Over his last five outings, Rodon sports an 0.70 ERA with 51 strikeouts to 11 walks. His ERA for the season drops to 1.73.

Following Rodon's exit, Eric Peterson and Will Gilbert combined to work the final two innings, holding the Deacons scoreless on one hit and one walk.

Preston Palmeiro submitted the Pack's only multi-hit effort of the night, going 2-for-4 with a double, two RBIs , and a run. Trea Turner reached base for the 19th-consecutive game. Garrett Suggs drove in a pair in a 1-for-3 effort with a run. Brett Austin scored twice in a 1-for-3 ballgame with an RBI, two walks, and a stolen base.

After two scoreless innings, the Wolfpack jumped ahead 3-0 in the third on a rally started by Logan Ratledge's double to left center. Andrew Knizner reached on a fielding error next, putting runners on the corners with one away. Knizner broke up a double play opportunity with a hard slide at second to plate the game's first run on Austin's RBI. Chance Shepard drew a walk to put two on, and the pair advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch. Another wild pitch scored Austin, and yet another scored Shepard after a Fincher walk to make it 3-0.

Suggs scored to make it 4-0 in the fourth on Ratledge's RBI to third. After Wake trimmed the lead to 4-1 in the top of the seventh, State rallied to put the game away. Knizner drew a one-out walk and advanced to second on Austin's single through the right side. With two down, Fincher singled through the right side to score Knizner. Palmeiro doubled to right center to drive in two more. Suggs sent a 2-RBI single down the right field line two batters later to extend the lead to 9-1.

NC State returns to action on Saturday, May 10 at 6:30 p.m. for game two of the series on ESPN3. Radio coverage will be handled by 88.1 WKNC. Fans can also follow along with live stats on, or Twitter updates from @NCStateBaseball.

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