No. 2 North Carolina closes out the ACC regular season slate this
weekend with a top
10 showdown as No. 7 Virginia comes to town.The Tar Heels will be in
search of a secondstraight ACC Coastal title and can lock up the top
seed in the ACC Tournament with a win.
News & Notes
Carolina can secure its second consecutive ACC Coastal Division
title with one win over the Cavaliers this weekend. The Tar Heels
have won four Coastal Division titles - 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2012.
A win would give the Tar Heels their first ACC regular season
title since 1990 and UNC would be the No. 1 overall seed in the ACC
Tournament for the first time since 1990 as well.
Carolina is the only team in the country that has not suffered a
losing streak this season after keeping the streak alive on Tuesday.
Last weekend's series loss against Georgia Tech was the first
series loss of the year for Carolina and the first since April 20-21
of 2012, a stretch of 13 unbeaten series.
Colin Moran joined elite company over the weekend as he drew his
50th walk of the year. Moran became the second player in UNC history
to post 50 BBs, 60 Runs and 70 RBIs in a single season.
Freshman outfielder Skye Bolt returned to the
lineup Tuesday after missing the previous 17 games due to a broken
foot and went 1-for-3 with a stolen base.
The Tar Heels went 13-4 without Bolt in the lineup and averaged
7.24 runs per game compared to 9.24 with the freshman in the lineup
the previous 34 games.
Junior ace Kent Emanuel will be aiming for a single-season best
10 wins on Friday after posting nine wins as a freshman and eight
wins as a sophomore.
Carolina is in position to finish among the top 5 in team scoring
and team ERA, a feat accomplished by only three other teams since
North Carolina became the first team in the country to reach 40
wins with its 10-2 win over Charlotte and reached 45 wins for the
seventh time in eight years with the 3-1 win at Georgia Tech.
UNC will also captured its 20th ACC win of the year, a feat the
Tar Heels have accomplished in five of the last seven years. The
most ACC wins for a UNC club is 22 set in the 2006, 2008 and 2012
The 2013 season marks the first time since 2009 that two Tar
Heels have tallied at least 60 RBIs in a season when Dustin Ackley
(73), Kyle Seager (62) and Mark Fleury (60) accomplished the feat.
The duo of Colin Moran (78) and Cody Stubbs (65) have combined
for 143 RBIs this season and are currently the top two RBI men in
UNC has outscored its opponents 170-34 in the first three innings
this year and own the best scoring margin in the country at 5.6.
Carolina dropped to No. 2 in the latest RPI after holding the top
spot the last three weeks. UNC will face No. 3 Virginia and No. 4
Florida State to close out the regular season.
Thursday's contest will be the 283rd all-time meeting between the Tar
Heels and Cavaliers.
Entering the 2013 season the Carolina-Virginia series was the most
played series for the Tar Heels but currently sits one game behind the
UNC-Wake Forest and UNC-NC State series now.
Carolina swept the series in Charlottesville a year ago with 2-1, 6-2
and 5-3 wins. UNC has won six of the last seven meetings dating back to
the 2010 series where Virginia won all three games.
Last 5 - UNC leads, 4-1
Last 10 - UNC leads, 6-4
Last 5 at UNC - UNC leads, 4-1
Last 10 at UNC - UNC leads, 7-3
ACC Regular Season Title In Sight
With one win this weekend the Tar Heels will claim their second
consecutive ACC Coastal Division title and their first ACC Regular
Season title since 1990.
The Tar Heels have won four ACC Coastal Division crowns but have
never posted the top overall record during the divisional format.
Carolina has been the top overall seed in the ACC Tournament five
times but have yet to enter the tournament as the top seed since 1990.
Carolina has posted 20 ACC wins for the third straight year and the
sixth time since 2006.
A sweep of Virginia would give the Tar Heels their most ACC wins in
UNC's Most Single Season ACC Wins
22 - 2008 (22-7), 2012 (22-8), 2006 (22-8)
21 - 2007 (21-9)
20 - 2013 (20-5), 2011 (20-10)
19 - 2009 (19-10)
Avoiding A Losing Streak
Carolina has not suffered back-to-back losses this season and if the
Tar Heels can continue the streak they would become the ninth UNC team
since 1910 to avoid a losing streak.
The last time a Carolina team did not suffer a losing streak in a
season was 1953.
The 1974 and 1984 teams did not have a losing streak during the
regular season but suffered back-to-back losses in the 1974 ACC
Tournament and the 1984 NCAA Tournament.
The Tar Heels are the last team in the country to not have
Moran Joins Rare Company
Junior Colin Moran walked six times in the Georgia Tech series and in
the process became just the second player in UNC history to post 50
walks, 60 runs scored and 70 RBIs in a single season.
The last player to reach the 50, 60 and 70 marks was Dustin Ackley in
his 2009 ACC and
National Player of the Year season when he walked 50 times, scored 75
runs and tallied
Moran has a chance to become only the third player in the UNC history
to record 80 RBIs in a single season with two more RBIs this week. Moran
currently has a nation's best 78 RBIs.
The 78 RBIs is the highest RBI total for a Tar Heel since Marshall
Hubbard's recordbreaking 83 RBI season of 2004.
Bolt Returns To Action
For the second straight year the Tar Heels lost one of the top
offensive players in the
country for an extended period of time when Skye Bolt went down with a
broken foot after Colin Moran missed 21 games a year ago.
Bolt returned to the lineup Tuesday and went 1-for-3 with a single
and a stolen base.
Carolina went 13-4 in the 17 games without Bolt.
The switch-hitting Bolt will provide a boost against left-handed
pitching as Carolina owned a .300 average against left-handers with Bolt
in the lineup but slipped to .264 without Bolt.