Hokies lose extra-inning heartbreaker in Game 3 of UNC series, 4-3

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Virginia Tech (15-23) 02000001372
North Carolina (22-19) 20000002470
  • Anderson Stadium - 473

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Junior Caitlyn Nolan hit a solo home run to left field in the top of the eighth inning, but North Carolina answered with a walk-off two-run single in the bottom of the frame to win 4-3 over Virginia Tech’s softball team on Sunday afternoon at Anderson Field.

Carrie Eberle tossed 7.2 innings on 103 pitches, giving up two earned runs on the day for the Hokies (15-23, 2-12 ACC), while Brittany Pickett earned the win in the circle by pitching 7.0 innings on 86 pitches and allowing one earned run for the Tar Heels (22-19, 11-4 ACC).

In the top of the first inning, senior Caroline Schoenewald singled up the middle to begin the day at the plate for Tech. Junior Olivia Lattin walked on the next at-bat and Eberle earned a base on balls, too, putting three runners on base for Carolina’s pitcher Kellyn Daly. Daly got the next two outs to survive with a clean slate.

UNC’s first two batter grounded out in the bottom of the first, before two walks and fielding errors on Tech gave the Tar Heels two runs. The Hokies would respond with a two-run homer over the scoreboard from sophomore Taylor Clark, though, tying the game back up in the top of the second inning to force Daly out of the circle.

Tech would put some pressure on Daly’s replacement in Pickett in the top of the seventh. Emma Strouth and Eberle worked full counts and earned walks, but a groundout to third would conclude the half inning. Eberle went back out and forced a three-up, three-down effort to get it to extras.

On the first pitch in the top of the eighth inning, Nolan drilled a no-doubter to left field for the go-ahead lead. The next two batters would go down, but freshman Cana Davis tallied a single to right and Schoenewald was hit by a pitch to put two on. Lattin cranked a pitch to deep center field, but Carolina’s Kiani Ramsey made a catch on the warning track to stop the bleeding.

Ramsey would leadoff in the bottom of the eighth and get to first on a bunt single for UNC. Another bunt single by the next batter and a fielder’s choice in the following at-bat brought the game to bases loaded, one out for Eberle. The North Carolina native induced a ground out on the next batter, but a two RBI single up the middle by Carolina’s Sierra Parkinson clinched it.

Tech will be back in action on Tuesday against Liberty at Tech Softball Park, starting at 7 p.m. ET.

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