DURHAM, N.C. – With five runs in the first and an additional five more runs over the last two frames, Virginia Tech cruised to a 14-7 victory over Duke on Saturday afternoon at Durham Bulls Athletic Park to clinch the ACC series over the Blue Devils.
The Hokies pounded out a season-high tying 16 hits, the most by the team in an ACC game since 2011, when they had 18 against Florida State on April 16. The 14 runs were the most scored in a conference contest since May 15, 2010, when the Hokies beat Duke at English Field 18-8. The last time they scored 14 or more in a road ACC game was in a 19-18 loss at NC State on March 29, 2009.
Virginia Tech (15-5, 3-2 ACC) used six hits in the first inning, and a hit batsmen, to send 10 men to the plate and cross it five times. Tyler Horan, who tied a career high with four hits in the game, knocked in the first two with a triple, and Mark Zagunis followed with an RBI single.
With two outs and the bases loaded, Alex Perez singled home two more and the Hokies led 5-0.
Horan, who also tripled in the fifth inning which tied an ACC and school record for most triples in a single game, scored three times, as did Chad Pinder and Zagunis.
On the mound, Devin Burke allowed four runs on eight hits, walked one and struck out five in six innings of work. Burke, now 5-0, became the first Tech starting pitcher, as a member of the ACC, to win his first five starts to start a season and joins Rhett Ballard (2007) as the only two pitchers to pick up wins on the mound in the first two ACC weekends.
Duke (10-9, 2-3 ACC) had three players hit home runs, a pair of solo shots by Andy Perez and Jordan Betts, while Chris Marconcini hit a two-run home run in the seventh. Drew Van Orden took the loss for the Blue Devils.
The two teams will complete the three-game ACC series on Sunday at Durham Bulls Athletic Park with first pitch scheduled for 1 p.m.
Additional Notes: Tech matches its best start after 20 games overall since joining the ACC (2005) at 15-5, done last year as well. The Hokies have won three ACC games in a row for just the seventh time in their history, and have done it at least once each of the last five years. Tech wins its second ever ACC road opener, last winning at Georgia Tech (2007). Chad Pinder and Mark Zagunis have reached base in all 20 games this season, while Pinder has an 11-game hitting streak. Zagunis tied his career high in runs and RBI, while Pinder tied his career high in runs and Alex Perez matched his career high in RBI. The Hokies have now won four straight games at Duke. Coach Pete Hughes is just one win shy of 500 victories in his career, three shy of 200 at Tech.
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