College baseball: NC State's Elliott Avent earns 1,000th career win in 13-0 rout
RALEIGH, N.C. – NC State baseball head coach Elliott Avent recorded his 1,000th career win against North Carolina Central Tuesday evening, as the Wolfpack hit a season-high four home runs en route to a 13-0 win at Doak Field at Dail Park.
Now in his 28th season as a head coach and 21st at NC State, Avent reaches the milestone to become one of five active coaches in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) and one of 15 active coaches among NCAA Division I to accomplish the feat.
"Well, it feels good to win," said Avent. "It was a rough weekend in Boston and it was good to play good tonight. Coach Hart had a talk with the hitters today and I thought they responded tremendously.
"It takes a lot of good players to get 1,000 wins. When I look back on it, I think about Billy Best coaching with me my first five years here and all the things he did and what a great person he is. I think about Chris Combs, Tom Sergio, and all the players that came through here. I also think about Chris Hart, he's been with me for thirteen years and he's been unbelievable and loyal, and he works harder than anybody I know. It just makes me feel good and proud when I think about all the people that I've worked with all these years."
NC State jumped out to an early lead in the contest, scoring at least one run in four of the first five innings. Joe Dunand hit a sacrifice fly to center field to plate the first run of the game in the bottom of the first and the Wolfpack extended the lead with four runs in the second.
Evan Mendoza hit an RBI double to right center and later scored on a wild pitch. After a fielding error on NCCU and a hit-by-pitch, Brad Debo tripled to deep right field to drive in two runs and he scored on a passed ball to make it 5-0.
The Wolfpack hit three home runs in the bottom of the fourth to pull away from the Eagles. Josh McLain smacked the first of the inning on an 0-2 pitch over the left field wall. After Debo was hit-by-pitch, Dunand launched a two-run blast to left field and Brett Kinneman followed with a solo shot to right field.
It was the second time this season that NC State has hit back-to-back home runs, as Debo and Mendoza accomplished the feat at UNCW.
Dunand left the yard for the second time in the game in the fifth with a two-run homer over the left field wall to finish the day 3-for-3 with a pair of homers and five RBI. The Pack added a run in the eighth off a sacrifice fly from Brock Deatherage to push the lead to 13-0.
Tuesday's victory was the third shutout for NC State. Tommy DeJuneas earned the win with 4.2 innings in relief to improve to 3-0 on the year. He struck out five batters and allowed just two hits.
NC State will return to action Wednesday evening when it travels to East Carolina for a 7 p.m. first pitch at Clark-LeClair Stadium.