Moss takes sting out of Yellow Jackets

ATLANTA -- Sophomore right-hander Benton Moss turned in his best outing of the season Saturday night in Atlanta as he tossed eight scoreless innings in No. 1 UNC's 3-1 win at No. 30 Georgia Tech (31-20, 13-13 ACC).
Moss surrendered just two hits in his eight innings of work, while striking out five Yellow Jackets.
The Tar Heels (45-5, 20-4 ACC) gave Moss an early lead to work with as they loaded the bases with nobody out in the first.
Leadoff man Chaz Frank doubled to open the contest and moved to third on a Landon Lassiter single before Colin Moran walked to load the bases. Brian Holberton dropped a single in front of the right fielder to score Frank and give UNC a 1-0 lead.
Cody Stubbs then rifled a shot at the third baseman that was snared for the first out of the inning before a chopper up the middle was turned into an inning-ending double play ball.
Moss cruised through the Georgia Tech lineup the first time around as he retired the Yellow Jackets in order in the first three innings of the contest.
Carolina threatened again in the third inning against Georgia Tech starter Dusty Isaacs as Brian Holberton drew a two-out walk and moved to second on a Cody Stubbs single to right field.
Michael Russell hit a deep chopper behind the bag at third and was able to beat out the throw for an infield single but Holberton rounded third too aggressively and was caught for the final out of the inning.
The Yellow Jackets would notch leadoff singles in the fourth and fifth innings but Moss was able to work out of danger and strand the tying run at third base in both frames.
The Tar Heels would eventually add an insurance run in the sixth when Holberton opened the inning with a walk and stole second before coming around to score on a Russell RBI single down the left field line.
The Carolina defense turned a line drive into a double play in the bottom of the sixth before Moss elevated his game to another level and retired the next six batters he faced, while racking up three more strikeouts.
Korey Dunbar singled home a run in the top of the ninth for an insurance run before closer Trent Thornton came on for the ninth inning.
Thornton surrendered a two-out home run to Daniel Palka but recorded the final out for his fifth save of the year.
Michael Russell paced a nine-hit attack for the Tar Heels with three hits on Saturday.
Moss moved to 8-1 on the year with the win, while the Tar Heels claimed their 45th win of the year. The 45 wins marks the seventh time in the last eight years that Carolina has reached the 45 win mark.
Carolina also notched its 20th conference win of the year for the sixth time since 2006.
The Tar Heels will go for their 10th series win of the year at 1 p.m. on Sunday.