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Down by one run, Syracuse entered the seventh inning in need of a rally to keep the team’s hopes of winning its first Atlantic Coast Conference series of the season alive.
Georgia Tech transfer Maddie McPherson stood on the mound for the Wolfpack. Despite entering Sunday with only one appearance all season in which she allowed more than one earned run, she was still searching for the first complete game of her NC State career.
And without much resistance from the Orange, she got it. In just seven pitches, she sent Carli Campbell, Tessa Galipeau and Angel Jasso back to the dugout in order, securing the series win for the Wolfpack (18-3, 2-1 ACC) over the Orange (10-6, 1-2 ACC). On Friday, NC State beat Syracuse 8-2 but the Orange responded with a 9-3 win on Saturday.
Syracuse scored the game’s first run in the bottom of the first inning as Jasso hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score Campbell. But the Wolfpack responded with four unanswered runs, all off the bat of freshman Michele Tarpey, who produced three RBIs in the series opener on Friday.
NC State’s first run came in the bottom of the first off a two-out double by Tarpey. Kaylee Lambrecht scored to tie the game, but Carson Shaner was thrown out at the plate after trying to score from first base, ending the inning.
But in the third inning, the Wolfpack jumped ahead on another two-out hit by Tarpey. Kaia Oliver walked Shaner on a full count to load the bases, which Tarpey cleared to put NC State up 4-1. Ariana Adams replaced Oliver and induced a groundout to end the inning.
After a quiet fourth inning, the Orange rebounded in the fifth inning. Angie Ramos, Jude Padilla and Paris Woods started the inning with three consecutive singles, bringing Campbell up with the bases loaded and nobody out. Campbell cashed in on the scoring opportunity with a single of her own and Galipeau followed her up with a base hit down the right field line — Syracuse’s fifth straight single — to tie the game.
The Orange were in prime position to retake the lead with Galipeau on first base, Campbell on third and Jasso at the plate with no outs. Pitcher Jolie Gustave came in to pinch run for Galipeau and Jasso worked the count full.
She then ripped a line drive to first base, directly at Tarpey, who completed the unassisted double play. Campbell remained at third, but another lineout, this time by Neli Casares-Maher, ended the inning.
Adams forced two groundouts on three pitches to begin the bottom of the fifth inning and it appeared the Orange would escape the frame. But with two outs, Logan Morris drove the second pitch she saw over the wall in left field to retake the lead.
Syracuse had a scoring opportunity in the sixth after Kelly Breen was hit by the first pitch of the inning. Olivia Pess pinch ran for her and stole second, eventually advancing to third on a wild pitch with two outs. But McPherson neutralized the threat, forcing Woods to pop up on the first pitch to retain the Wolfpack’s 5-4 lead.