Holton had five perfect innings on the night, including striking out the side in the eighth inning. Wake Forest entered the weekend series ranked in the top 10 nationally in home runs, hits, runs and slugging percentage, but Holton held Wake to .129 hitting on Saturday (4-for-31), and 0-for-6 with runners on base.
The Florida State defense was flawless behind Holton, running its errorless streak to 40 innings. Holton, a three-time ACC Pitcher of the Week, recorded the first shutout and complete game of his career. His previous high was eight innings pitched against No. 4 Clemson on April 16 of this year.
“Tyler Holton can mess with your timing as a hitter,” Martin said. “He’s a guy that enjoys matching wits with hitters, being a hitter himself…he’s a baseball player, and thank God he’s on my team.”
For the Demon Deacons, Donnie Sellers (3-5) picked up the loss but allowed just two hits after the four-run first. Morgan McSweeney allowed a hit over the final two innings, and Jake Mueller had two of Wake Forest’s four hits.
Game 1 – Wake Forest 4, Florida State 3
The first game Saturday started in the bottom of the fifth inning after a 58-minute weather delay Friday eventually led to a postponement and halted action with Wake Forest leading 4-2. The Seminoles added a run in the fifth on Jackson Lueck’s RBI double, but both teams went scoreless the rest of the way as Wake won 4-3.
What was supposed to be an offensive shootout started with both pitchers dominating. Florida State starter Cole Sands allowed just one baserunner through the first three innings, a second-inning walk to Gavin Sheets. Wake Forest starter Parker Dunshee allowed one hit, to Taylor Walls in the third inning, and walked two without allowing a run.
The Wake Forest bats came to life in the fourth inning, tallying three runs on four hits off Sands. After a hit batter put a runner on base, Sheets launched his 18thhome run of the year over the right field wall to give the visitors a 2-0 lead. Sheets entered the weekend ranked sixth in the country in home runs and led the nation with 70 runs batted in.
Bruce Steel’s one-out double in the fourth made it 3-0 Wake Forest. The Demon Deacons left the bases loaded as Sands limited the damage with a fly out to J.C. Flowers to end the inning.
Drew Mendoza hit a one-out double off Dunshee in the fourth, and Tyler Holton hit a two-out home run over the right field wall to cut the Deacs lead to 3-2. It was Holton’s second home run in just his 13th at-bat of the season.
Wake Forest got one run back in the fifth on Stuart Fairchild’s 13th home run of the year. Sands left after that, allowing four runs in 4.1 innings. Clayton Kwiatkowski allowed a walk and a single, and Chase Haney entered and retired two batters to limit the damage before the weather delay halted the game Friday night.
Wake Forest used pitcher Colin Peluse (3-1) on Saturday. After Lueck’s RBI double, Peluse finished with three innings of work and just the one hit allowed. For the Seminoles, Andrew Karp went 3.1 innings Saturday, allowing just one hit and no runs.
Griffin Roberts earned his sixth save of the season, allowing two ninth-inning baserunners but no runs in keeping FSU off the board and securing the win. Holton was the only Seminole with two hits, adding a single in the ninth, but was erased on a game-ending double play off the bat of Flowers.
“We’ve played pretty good baseball the last four weeks,” Martin said. “We’ve had some losses that have stung. You just have to take it one day at a time. No expectations.”
Florida State will conclude its home schedule Sunday in the series finale against Wake Forest. First pitch is set for 1:00 p.m. The game will stream live on ACC Network Extra, with Ariya Massoudi and Chip Baker providing commentary. The game will be live on the radio in Tallahassee on 106.1 FM and nationwide through the FSU Gameday App.
LHP Drew Parrish (5-2, 4.94 ERA) will pitch for the Seminoles, while Connor Johnstone (7-0, 3.04) will go for Wake Forest.
– Quincy Nieporte had a pair of doubles on the day, running his season total to 12.
– Jackson Lueck’s two doubles give him eight on the year.
– Prior to the night game, Florida State held a modified graduation ceremony for eight players receiving their degrees. FSU President John Thrasher presided over the annual event.
– Holton’s complete game was FSU’s second this year, after Drew Parrish went the distance at Notre Dame in March. It is the first complete game shutout since Drew Carlton did so in Game 1 of the 2016 Super Regional at Florida, and the first in Tallahassee since Mike Compton allowed two hits against Boston College in a 7-0 FSU win.
– Holton did not allow a walk in the game, the fourth time this season FSU pitching has done so.
For more information on Florida State baseball, check Seminoles.com for the latest news and scheduling information, or keep up with the team on social media through Twitter (@FSUBaseball), Facebook (/FSUBaseball), and Instagram (@NoleBaseball).