CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - No. 6 North Carolina used the big inning to its advantage Thursday night as the Tar Heels rolled to a 13-2 win over Virginia Tech at Boshamer Stadium. All nine starters scored a run in the rout and Kent Emanuel earned his eighth win of the year with seven innings of two-run ball.
Sophomore Kent Emanuel ran his winning streak to three straight by going seven innings and allowing two runs on five hits, while striking out seven.
For Emanuel it was his 13th quality start (at least six innings allowing three earned runs or less) in his 14 starts on the season as he improves to 8-3.
"We are playing real well right now," head coach Mike Fox said. "We just have to keep it rolling and I think our pitching and defense have been a big part of our success."
The Tar Heel bats supported Emanuel all night long as they posted a four-run second inning before blowing the contest open in the fourth with seven more runs after Virginia Tech had pulled within two.
The Tar Heels ran out to a 4-0 lead after two innings thanks to the four-run second inning that saw the Hokies commit two errors.
Cody Stubbs delivered a two-run double in the frame and Chaz Frank continued his torrid pace at the plate with a RBI single.
The Hokies pulled within two when Tyler Horan connected on a two-run home run to center field in the top of fourth.
Carolina responded in a big way as the first six batters in the fourth inning reached safely. Frank came up with runners on first and second and nobody out and proceeded to rip a pitch into the right field corner for his team-leading sixth triple of the campaign.
Following a Tommy Coyle walk, Colin Moran made it an 8-2 ball game when he split the defenders in right center for a two-run double and the rout was on.
Jacob Stallings delivered his 20th double of the season to plate Moran in the fourth before a Parks Jordan RBI ground out and a Cody Stubbs RBI double capped off the scoring.
Jordan added another RBI in the sixth with a sacrifice fly before Moran started a two-out rally in the seventh that would result in UNC's final run thanks to a pinch-hit RBI single from Grayson Atwood.
Juniors Cody Penny and Chris Munnelly each tossed scoreless frames to close out the contest and help the Tar Heels win their 11th straight game.
The win gave Carolina its 40th win on the season and 20th conference victory as the Tar Heels became the first team in the country to win 20 conference and 20 non-conference games.
The defense played its fifth-straight game without committing an error, the longest streak since the 2011 squad posted five straight from May 27 through June 5.
Cody Stubbs and Colin Moran each finished with a team-high three hits and Stubbs along with Frank led the Tar Heels with three RBIs apiece.
Carolina will go for its 11th series win of the year Friday night as freshman Benton Moss will square off against Virginia Tech's Joe Mantiply.