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NC State Baseball By The Numbers

Drew Franklinby:Drew Franklin06/15/24

DrewFranklinKSR

It is time for more on NC State, the next team standing between Kentucky and the College World Series final. In this preview, we’ll look over some of the Wolfpack’s most significant and outstanding numbers, things like the team getting hot at the right time and the most impressive individual statistics.

(Photo by Joshua L. Jones / USA TODAY NETWORK)

38-21 overall record (18-11 ACC)

The Wolfpack finished third in the ACC, four wins shy of North Carolina (22-8), a fellow College World Series participant. NC State finished ahead of the ACC’s other two CWS teams, Florida State (17-12) and Virginia (18-12).

16 wins in the last 20 games

NC State is hot, winning 16 of 20 games going into Saturday’s game in Omaha.

No. 10 national seed in the tournament

NC State hosted a regional round as the No. 10 seed in the 2024 NCAA Tournament, the school’s 34th NCAA appearance. NC State is 68-69 all-time in the tournament.

5-1 in the Road to Omaha

NC State was perfect in the NCAA Raleigh Regional, going 3-0 at home to advance to the Supers in Athens. Against Georgia, the Wolfpack won two of three to take the series, winning Game 1 and the elimination Game 3.

  • NC State 9, Bryant 2
  • NC State 6, South Carolina 4
  • NC State 5, James Madison 3
  • NC State 18, Georgia 1
  • Georgia 11, NC State 2
  • NC State 8, Georgia 5

4th College World Series appearance

NC State first made it to Omaha in 1968, going 2-2 in the school’s College World Series debut. Many years passed until the Pack returned in 2013, followed by a third trip in 2021. The most recent College World Series appearance was a heartbreaking one as NC State was sent home due to COVID protocols.

16 come-from-behind wins in 2024

NC State likes its wins to be dramatic. 16 times in 2024, NC State fell behind early in a game only to come from behind to earn a victory. The 16 comeback wins this season are a school record.

Four All-ACC selections

Four members of the Pack were named to the All-ACC teams at the end of the regular season. Junior catcher Jacob Cozart, graduate third baseman Alec Makarewicz, graduate pitcher Sam Highfill, and third baseman Garrett Pennington represented NC State on the All-ACC teams.

Cozart’s second All-ACC year was his first time on the first team. Makarewicz made the second team, followed by third-team spots for Highfill and Pennington.

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51 doubles for Pennington and Makarewicz

Pennington and Makarewicz rank No. 1 and No. 2 in the ACC in doubles this season. Pennington has the slight lead with 26 doubles to Makarewicz’s 25, the second-most in the league. They’re No. 4 and No. 7 nationally.

.744 slugging percentage

Makarewicz also has one of the best slugging percentages in the league, ranking fourth (.744) in the ACC and 34th nationally. The grad transfer from East Carolina has the ACC’s second-most RBI (80) and the sixth-most home runs (22), too.

9 HRs in 9 games for Cozart

Earlier this season, Jacob Cozart hit nine home runs in nine games. A finalist for the Buster Posey Award, Cozart is also one of the best behind the plate. He’s considered a top-50 MLB prospect at catcher.

3 batters with at least 18 home runs

Makarewicz (22), Cozart (19), and Pennington (18) bring the power in the batting order with a combined 59 home runs.

22 straight games on base

Centerfielder Eli Serrano has quite a streak going entering the College World Series. Batting leadoff for NC State, Serrano has reached base in 22 straight games, the longest streak on the team.

May 23, 2024; Charlotte, NC, USA; NC State Wolfpack pitcher Sam HIghfill (17) starts the third inning against the Duke Blue Devils during the ACC Baseball Tournament at Truist Field. Mandatory Credit: Scott Kinser-USA TODAY Sports

13-2 with Highfill on the mound

NC State’s ace, Sam Highfill, is 7-2 in 2024. Even better, NC State is 13-2 overall in games that Highfill pitches. Kentucky should expect to see him on Saturday.

0.90 ERA in Smith’s last 14 appearances

Sophomore closer Derrick Smith has been spectacular the last couple of months, allowing only two runs in his last 14 appearances. In that span, the sophomore’s ERA is 0.90 over 20.1 innings pitched with 33 strikeouts. Smith’s eighth save of the year sent NC State to Omaha.

6.09 Team Era

One to make the Big Blue Nation feel a little better after we spent the last few minutes building up NC State. As a team, NC State has a 6.09 ERA, ranked No. 154 in the country.

4-3 all-time versus Kentucky

Despite losing the 2017 NCAA Lexington Regional to the Wildcats, NC State still holds a 4-3 record against Kentucky historically. Before 2017, the Wolfpack won one-run games against UK in 1992 and 1993. The teams split two other meetings going back to 1906, according to UK’s records.

In Omaha, Kentucky can climb out of that historical hole by advancing past NC State in the NCAA Tournament once again.

Go Cats.

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2024-07-13