DURHAM, N.C. – Duke’s Jake Lemmerman posted a career-high three hits, four RBI and three stolen bases to lead Duke over No. 11 North Carolina 15-11 in front of 2572 fans Saturday afternoon at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Junior Patrick Johnson (2-2) suffers the loss for the Tar Heels, who fall to 12-3 overall and 1-1 in ACC play. The Blue Devils’ Christopher Manno (1-1) earned the win for the Blue Devils. Duke improves to 10-4 overall and 1-1 in ACC play.
The two teams will meet tomorrow for one point in the Carlyle Cup, the all-sports competition between the two teams, that Carolina leads 11-6.5 in 2009-10.
Ten different Tar Heels recorded at least one hit and seven different players at least one RBI for Carolina, who scored 11 runs on 16 hits. Tommy Coyle and Levi Michael each posted three hits and two RBI to lead the Tar Heels. Senior Ryan Graepel (1-for-6, RBI) extended his hit streak to a career best nine games. Freshman Brian Goodwin (2-for-5, 2 RBI) stretched his hit streak to a season-high 10 games.
Lemmerman paced the Blue Devils with a three hits and four RBI. Will Piwnica-Worms continued to impress against the Tar Heels with three hits and three RBI. Piwnica-Worms hit his fifth career home run in the game and second against the Tar Heels. The Blue Devils stole seven bases to help manufacture 15 runs.
Patrick Johnson (2-2) suffers the loss after allowing six runs on six hits in 3.2 innings. Chris Munnelly and Michael Morin pitched in relief allowing a combined nine runs, eight earned, in just 1.2 innings. R.C. Orlan was the lone Tar Heel hurler to not allow a run in 2.2 innings of work. The 15 runs and 17 hits allowed are both season-highs for the Tar Heel staff.
Manno (1-0) earned his first win of the season relieving Blue Devil starter Eric Pfisterer after 4.1 innings. Marcus Stroman threw three frames of relief work allowing five runs on six hits.
The Tar Heels got off to a fast start for the second time in as many days, scoring one run in the first. Michael ripped an RBI single through the left side to score Ben Bunting and give Carolina an early 1-0 lead. Pfisterer labored in the first hitting two batters.
Duke answered back to knot the score at one after the first frame. A Jeremy Gould RBI sacrifice fly scored Lemmerman. Johnson allowed one run on two hits in the first.
Carolina plated two more runs in the second inning after Mike Cavasinni reached on an error and a Bryn Renner single to right field. Coyle ripped a double down the right field line to score Cavasinni, and Renner later scored on a RBI sacrifice fly off the bat of Michael. After two frames the Tar Heels were in front 3-1.
Duke gained their first lead of the series after a towering three-run home run from Piwnica-Worms that went over the blue monster in left field. Piwnica-Worms belted his fifth career home run and second against the Tar Heels, as the Blue Devils led 4-3 after three frames.
Pfisterer regained his command striking out four Tar Heel batters through the first four frames.
The Blue Devils scrapped together two more runs in the bottom of the fourth. Two infield singles and a double steal put runners at second and third with one out. Ryan McCurdy then executed a safety squeeze bunt to score Stroman. A Lemmerman RBI double to left center scored another Blue Devil run and ended Johnson’s day on the mound. Munnelly entered in relief and retired a Blue Devil batter on strikes to end the inning.
Carolina battled back in the top of the fifth scoring two runs on three hits. Graepel just missed a home run, tattooing a double off the top of the wall in left center. The double ended Pfisterer’s day as fellow left-hander Christopher Manno entered in relief.
A Cavasinni RBI single scored Goodwin and a RBI sacrifice fly off the bat of Renner scored Graepel as Carolina inched closer cutting the Blue Devil lead to 6-5, before Manno ended the threat with a fly out.
Both teams exchanged runs in the bottom of the fifth and top of the sixth as Duke maintained a one run lead at 7-6. Duke stretched their lead to 15-6 scoring eight runs on seven hits in the bottom of the sixth.
A three-run home run from Lemmerman and two run Tar Heel error helped the Blue Devils manufacture eight runs in the frame. The eight runs in the frame mark a season-high allowed for the Tar Heel staff.
Carolina battled back to score three in the seventh and two more in the ninth, but fell short by a margin of four runs. Goodwin earned both his RBI late in the game, but the Blue Devils proved too much as Carolina left 13 runners on base.
In two games the two teams have combined for 56 runs, 67 hits, 46 runners left of base, seven errors, ten hit batsman, 15 doubles and four home runs in nearly seven hours of action.
The two teams will play the series finale tomorrow at 1 p.m. at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park.