TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Quincy Nieporte’s double off the right centerfield wall helped set up Jackson Lueck’s walk-off single to left field as 10th-ranked Florida State (27-11, 12-4 ACC) earned a 7-6 victory over Notre Dame (23-14, 9-9) in the 12th inning on Saturday evening. Nieporte, who capped off a 4-of-6 performance with three RBI, hit his second double of the evening to lead off the decisive inning.
He was replaced at second by pinch runner Hank Truluck, who motored home when Lueck hit a single over Irish left fielder Jake Shepski’s head to cap off the fourth walk-off win for FSU this season.
Along with Nieporte’s two doubles, the junior designated hitter also had a single and his third home run of the season, and his second in as many days. Lueck wrapped up his outing by going 2-for-6 from the plate with two RBI and a run scored.
Sophomore hurler Drew Carlton, who had a no decision, finished with season-high seven strikeouts as he scattered five hits in 6.1 innings. Reliever Chase Haney posted his fourth win after pitching a scoreless 12th inning where he allowed one hit and struck out one Notre Dame batter.
“Drew Carlton is a bulldog because he is going to get out there and battle, maintain his poise and be in total control of his emotions,” said head coach Mike Martin. “It was a big win for us tonight and to minimize anything about it is wrong. It was a win that we needed because of the ACC and something that we needed for our overall psyche. That would’ve been a rough one to lose with a two-run lead and two outs in the ninth inning, but our guys weren’t going to let that happen.”
Notre Dame established a 2-0 lead in the first inning, but the Seminoles bounced back with three runs on four hits in the bottom of the second inning. Cal Raleigh opened the frame with a solo home run to left, his second in as many games, cutting the Irish lead in half. Nieporte, who carried over his performance from Friday, continued the inning with a double into centerfield.
Lueck became the third straight FSU batter to reach base with a single into centerfield, scoring Nieporte, before Ben DeLuzio reached base with a walk. Right fielder Steven Wells Jr. followed with a single to centerfield that loaded the bases. The inning drew to a close on a grounder by Matt Henderson that resulted in Lueck scoring the go-ahead run for the Seminoles.
Notre Dame’s Ricky Sanchez led off the fourth inning with a home run, tying the game at 3-3, before Nieporte cracked his second home run in the series to provide FSU with a 4-3 edge in the home half of the frame.
The seesaw battle continued with the Irish tying the game at four in the top of the seventh. Henderson opened the bottom of the inning with a single through the right side and following a walk by Taylor Walls the Florida State offense had two runners on base.
Sansone extended the inning with a single to first, loading the bases with no outs. Two outs later, Nieporte roped a seeing-eye single up the middle, scoring Henderson and Walls to provide the Seminoles with the 6-4 advantage.
Notre Dame’s Ryan Lidge hit a two-out, two-run home run over the right field wall in the top of the ninth to knot the score at 6-6 before the Seminoles walked off with the win in the 12th.
The three-game series concludes on Sunday when Florida State sends freshman Cole Sands (3-4, 4.81 ERA) to the mound to face Notre Dame right handed starter Ryan Smoyer (3-3, 3.40).
Seminole fans can always stay up-to-date with the Florida State Baseball team by following the official twitter page of the Seminoles (@FSUBaseball).