Diamond heels quench the flames

CHAPEL HILLBrandon Schaeffer pitched 4.1 scoreless innings and the Diamond Heels racked up nine hits to defeat Liberty, 8-1, at Boshamer Stadium on Wednesday to end a three-game losing streak.

Schaeffer (4-1) entered the game in the top of the fourth inning with UNC (24-17) ahead 5-1. After giving up a single to each of the first two batters he faced, he quickly retired the next three in order without giving up a run. He faced only nine batters in those three innings and the only batter he walked was obliterated on a double play in the fifth inning.

He gave up eight straight after the walk and was lifted on a fielding error in the eighth. Schaeffer finished the game with four strikeouts in 4.1 innings pitched.

The Diamond Heels scored five runs on the scoreboard in the second inning. Max Rimer and Mikey Madej delivered back-to-back RBI singles to open the scoring and Madej scored from third on a wild pitch. Danny Seretti hit a ball to the middle that was misplayed and allowed two more Carolina base runners to score.

Liberty (26-13) salvaged a run early in the third, but Carolina picked up that run and added another as MacHorvath hit a two-run home run on the scoreboard beyond the left field wall. Johnny Castagnozzi capped the offensive production with a home run to start the fifth inning.

Angel Zarate and Mikey Madej each had two hits, while Horvath had two runs.

Max Carlson started the game for Carolina and struck out five in 3.0 innings of work, while Davis Palermo closed it for the Diamond Heels with two strikeouts in 1.2 innings.

Trey Gibson (3-4) took the loss, giving up five runs on five hits in 2.0 innings pitched.

NOTABLES

• North Carolina improved to 24-6 against Liberty and 20-3 against the Flames at Chapel Hill.
• Horvath homered for the second straight game. It’s the fourth time this season he’s hit a home run in consecutive games. Horvath had four consecutive games from April 10-16.
• Castagnozzi homered for the first time since meeting South Carolina in Charlotte on 6 April. He had gone 52 at bats without a home run.
• Serretti and Hunter Stokely each has their career-long hitting streak snapped at 14 and eight games, respectively.
• Seven of Carolina’s nine hits were singles and the other two were home runs.
• Riemer made his third start of the season and went 1 for 3 with an RBI.

HOW DID IT HAPPEN

• Riemer singled through the middle to tackle Stokely with the game’s first point late in the second. Madej followed with an RBI single and then scored on a wild pitch. Zarate and Honeycutt scored on error (UNC 5, LU 0).
• Gray Betts hit a solo home run hit a one-out solo home run in the third inning (UNC 5, LU 1).
• Horvath hit a two-run homer on the scoreboard in left center field in the bottom of the fourth (UNC 7, LU).
• Castagnozzi started the fifth set with a home run (UNC 8, LU 1).

NEXT

The Diamond Heels will return to action on May 3 against Charlotte at Boshamer Stadium. The game is scheduled for 7 p.m. and will be televised on the ACC network.

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