UNC's Mike Fox at Tar Heels & # 39; ACC Baseball Tournament Championship
A Happy UNC Baseball Coach Mike Fox talks to journalists about Tar Heels & # 39; ACC Tournament Championship win over Georgia Tech Sunday, May 26, 2019 in Durham.
A happy UNC baseball coach Mike Fox talks to journalists about Tar Heels & # 39; ACC Tournament championship victory over Georgia Tech Sunday, May 26, 2019 in Durham.
At Night After North Carolina's 11-2 Loss for Rival N.C. State in the last game of the regular season sent senior team Hansen Butler his teammates a group announcement.
He told them to remember the loss and said they would come back to work the next day. This message is reasoned with UNC players and it showed in their performance at the ACC baseball tournament.
"Sometimes it doesn't, but the faster your team can regroup the better your team should be," said UNC junior first baseman Michael Busch.
North Carolina won three consecutive games to get to the ACC Baseball Championship final. And Sunday against the second-seeded Georgia Tech, the fifth-seeded Tar Heels put their most impressive performance.
Tar Heels used a large fourth inning and pitching to dominate No. 2 Yellow Jackets, 10-2, and win the ACC Baseball Championship.
The players celebrated and jumped up and down near the first base where the final was made. One by one, UNC coach Mike Fox each gave his player a hug.
"This as good as it gets," Fox said with a big smile on his face. "Whenever you can win an ACC Championship, it's pretty special."
The winner gives UNC (42-17) its seventh ACC tournament title in the history of the school. The previous two years – 2007 and 2013 – it was advanced to the College World Series.
With the winner, Tar Heels also earns an automatic bid in the NCAA tournament and is likely, but not guaranteed, to host a regional. Coming to Sunday's game, UNC had the 14th best RPI in the country. It will improve after the Georgia Tech victory.
As a top-eight seed in 2018, Tar Heels hosted a regional and super regional. They went unbeaten through both and advanced to the College World Series.
This year, Tar Heels is 32-6 at home and 8-10 on the road.
After losing five of his last eight games in the regular season, including two out of three at home against N.C. State, Tar Heels' goal was to win the ACC tournament.
It didn't come easy.
Two of their games went in extra innings. UNC beat Virginia 3-2 in 10 innings on May 22. In Miami on May 24, Tar Heels was down five rounds before winning 7-5 in the 12th. UNC averted a late comeback attempt from Boston College to win 12-5 in the semifinals.
The yellow jackets became the better team in the regular season. Georgia Tech beat UNC in two out of three games in Atlanta in April and won the ACC Coastal Division title.
But Tar Heels looked like the dominant team on Sunday.
UNC was allowed to run in the third, but the match was tied 1-1 at the top of the sixth when Tar Heels was on fire. Freshman appointed hitter Aaron Sabato blew a two-run home run over the right center field wall. Two smashes later hit other baseman Ashton McGee a two-run home run to give Tar Heels a 5-1 lead.
Busch hit a solo rally, his third home run of the tournament, in the seventh inning to make it 6-1. He finished the game 2-to-4 with an RBI, three races and a ride, and named the tournament MVP.
Tar Heels & # 39; bullpen, who was good at all tournaments, was good again Sunday. Fox went to his bullfight early in the third inning. Relievers Hansen Butler and Joey Lancellotti combined to pitch 6 1/3 innings of one-run baseball. The confronted 23 smashes, beat five, went two and allowed two hits and one run.
Butler was credited to the winner.
Their only run was allowed in the ninth. Enter Sunday's game, the bullpen had a 2.45 ERA in the tournament.
"Pitching is the key to winning championships," Fox said. "We've seen all our relievers really, really good all year round. So what it did this week didn't surprise me, and I don't think it surprised their teammates."
Tar Heels added four races to the ninth, including a home race from catcher Brandon Martorano.
When the final release was recorded, Busch raised his hands in victory.