Tar Heels Bounce Back to Defeat Wake Forest, 2-0
May 24, 2008
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Matt Harvey threw eight shutout innings and struck out 13 as No. 3 seed North Carolina (46-11) shut out Wake Forest, 2-0, late Friday night in the 2008 Atlantic Coast Conference Baseball Championship at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.
UNC's victory in the Division B bracket position sixth-seeded Virginia for the championship game at 1 p.m. on Sunday. The Cavaliers will likely face either top-seeded Miami or No. 4 seed North Carolina State from Division A round-robin play.
The Cavaliers defeated No. 2 Florida State, 5-3, earlier in the day. With a 2-0 record in the round-robin tournament, Virginia can advance in spite of a loss to Wake Forest on Saturday since the Cavaliers defeated higher-seeded North Carolina and FSU head-to-head in the league tournament.
Miami is the only 2-0 team in Division A.
Harvey (7-2) and Wake Forest starter Charlie Mellies (4-6) were locked in a pitching duel with the game scoreless through five innings. The Tar Heels finally got to Mellies in the sixth when Tim Fedroff hit a two-out solo homer in the sixth, his 12th of the year.
Carolina added another run in the eighth when Dustin Ackley singled and scored on an error and a wild pitch.
The Deacons (24-31) never got a runner to second and Harvey and relief pitchers Rob Wooten and Brian Moran combined to retired the last nine batters.
Game 8 Notes: North Carolina 2, Wake Forest 0
Earning his seventh win of the 2008 season was North Carolina freshman starter Matt Harvey. Harvey lasted eight innings against the Demon Deacons to give the Tar Heels their longest outing by a starting pitcher this year.
Harvey set a record for strikeouts in an ACC Championship game held in Jacksonville, Fla. (2005-08), with 13. The 13 strikeouts were also a career high and a season single-game high for a North Carolina pitcher.
Wake Forest starting pitcher Charlie Mellies tossed his third consecutive complete game, allowing the Tar Heels only six hits and a pair of runs. Mellies has now recorded four complete games this year and seven in his career. Wake Forest holds a 4-3 record in those contests.
Mellies, who made his third-ever start in an ACC Championship game, is now 1-1 in tournament starts. In two Championship starts against the Tar Heels, he has allowed just 10 hits and two earned runs over 14 innings in a pair of Wake Forest defeats.
Wake Forest shortstop Andy Goff extended his now team-best hitting streak to 12 games with a single in the bottom of the third inning.
Wake Forest's Allan Dykstra drew his 62nd walk of the year against North Carolina's Harvey. The 62 walks are a Wake Forest single-season record.
The North Carolina pitching staff handed Wake Forest its fifth-ever shutout in ACC Championship competition. The Demon Deacons were last shutout against Georgia Tech on May 19, 1994.
The Tar Heels and Demon Deacons posted the fewest hits between two teams (8) in a tournament game since May 16, 1997, when Georgia Tech and Duke combined for six total hits in a 5-3 Blue Devils victory. Wake Forest has been held to only two hits in tournament play just one previous time, in a 1-0 win over Maryland on April 24, 1975.
North Carolina's Tim Fedroff registered the game-winning hit with his first-ever ACC Championship home run in the top of the sixth inning. Fedroff leads the Tar Heels with 12 home runs this season.
With a single in the fourth inning, the Tar Heels' Chad Flack improved his career total bases count to 513. Flack is just two short of North Carolina's career record for total bases, held by Sean Farrell (2000-03)
North Carolina reliever Rob Wooten entered in the bottom of the ninth to make the 100th appearance of his Tar Heel career. Wooten, who struck out his only batter faced, has made 34 showings this season.
North Carolina now holds a 10-7 lead in the all-time ACC Championship series with Wake Forest.