DeMartini, McCann homer despite Tech's ACC tourney defeat

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Despite two no-doubt home run swings by Carson DeMartini and David McCann during Tuesday's Pool C opener at the 2024 ACC Baseball Championship, the 10th-seeded Virginia Tech baseball team was handed the 11-8 loss by sixth-seeded [No. 17] Duke at Truist Field.

DeMartini clubbed a three-run home run to right field during the top of the second inning that capped a five-run rally for Virginia Tech (32-21), shooting the Hokies out to the 5-0 advantage. Tech manufactured four base runners from four walks issued by the Blue Devils' starting pitcher, Ryan Higgins, all of whom came around to score as the Hokies built their lead.

Shut down at first by Wyatt Parliament's two perfect innings, Duke (36-18) bounced back in a big way during the bottom of the third inning, peppering Parliament with a series of loud extra-base hits.

Behind Devin Obee's leadoff triple, Zac Morris connected on the three-run home run that trimmed Tech's lead to 5-3 while Ben Miller's ensuing first-pitch double brought Parliament's night to an early end.

Matthew Siverling managed to pick up the second out of the third inning, though surrendered a pair of run-scoring singles that provided the Blue Devils with their first lead. Logan Bravo stroked an RBI single into center field while Chase Krewson delivered the two-RBI single that flipped the score in Duke's favor at 6-5.

Continuing to swing through the Hokies' bullpen, the Blue Devils received insurance home runs by Alex Stone (solo) and Morris (two-run) during the fifth and sixth innings, respectively, pushing their lead to 9-5. After Tech had reduced its deficit to three runs off a sacrifice fly by Ben Watson during the seventh inning, Duke rallied for two more runs during the bottom of the inning, cashing in an RBI double by Bravo.

McCann kept Virginia Tech competitive during the top of the eighth inning, finishing his three-RBI night with a mammoth, two-run home run that landed outside Truist Field, beyond the right field seating area. The Hokies' rookie designated hitter circled the bases for the ninth time during his freshman season, achieving an exit velocity of 107 miles per hour and a home run distance of 417 feet.

Morris led Duke with five RBIs from his two home run balls. Bravo and Krewson both logged two-hit nights for the Blue Devils while Charlie Beilenson piched the final three innings, chalking his 12th save of the season.

Virginia Tech will conclude its week at the 2024 ACC Baseball Championship on Wednesday, May 22, against third-seeded [No. 12] NC State. First pitch between the Hokies and the Wolfpack at Truist Field is scheduled for 7 p.m. and will follow earlier tournament action.

Gallery: (5-21-2024) BSB: ACC Tournament vs. Duke