May 24, 2003
Salem, Va. – No. 1 Florida State (50-9-1) scored 10 runs in the fifth inning and went on to defeat No. 5 NC State (42-15) 17-6 in the ACC Tournament Saturday night. Rhett James picked up his first career win after pitching 2.1 scoreless innings of relief, while striking out two with one walk. Matt DiBlasi picked up his first career save working the final three innings. Tony Richie, Jerrod Brown and Bryan Zech each had three hits in the win to pace the Seminole offense.
NC State took a 2-0 lead with a pair of unearned runs in the second and third inning. Joe Gaetti reached on a Stephen Drew error in the second, moved to third on a double and came home on a sacrifice fly by Marc Manor. In the third, Matt Camp reached on a Drew error and eventually scored on a bases loaded walk by Gaetti.
The Seminoles put up three in the top of the fourth take the lead. Richie led off the inning with a single and Blake Balkcom followed with a double off the wall in right to put runners on second and third. Brown picked up two RBI with a double down the right field line. Chris Hart’s RBI-single down the third base line plated Brown to make it 3-2.
Florida State took complete control of the game with 10 runs in the top of the fifth. Brown, Chris Hart, Bryan Zech and Drew knocked in a run while Richie added a sacrifice fly and Aaron Cheesman knocked in another with a fielder’s choice. Richie scored another run when he stole home on a double steal. Blake Balkcom did the rest of the damage with a three-run homer to center, extending the lead to 13-2.
Brandon Shipwash took the loss for the Wolfpack while allowing three runs on six hits and striking out four.
Florida State will take on the winner of the Georgia Tech-North Carolina game Sunday at 1:00 p.m. Right-hander Glen Simon is scheduled to start on the mound in that game. If the Seminoles win that game, they will face NC State for the ACC Championship at 4:30 p.m. Both games will be televised live by Sunshine Network, Fox Sports Net South ComCast Sports.