DURHAM, N.C. - Fresh off a series win at No. 24 Miami this past weekend, the Duke baseball team returns to Durham for a pair of non-conference, midweek matchups. The Blue Devils take on cross-town foe N.C. Central at 6 p.m., Tuesday at the Durham Athletic Park before squaring off with Quinnipiac Wednesday at 6 p.m., at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park.
The Blue Devils are 8-7 overall and 2-1 in the ACC heading into the week. Duke took two games from Miami over the weekend, downing the Hurricanes 4-2 Friday and 9-2 Saturday before suffering a 5-3 loss Sunday.
Sophomore left-hander Trent Swart scattered seven hits over six innings to earn his second win of the season Friday. The Carlsbad, Calif., native struck out six and did not allow an extra base hit or a walk in the contest. Duke's offense churned out 13 hits in the 4-2 victory, led by freshman Kenny Koplove's 3-for-5 outing.
In eight starts at shortstop, Koplove is hitting .375 with five runs scored and four RBI while also playing flawless defense.
Junior RHP Drew Van Orden followed Swart's Friday performance with six scoreless innings of his own Saturday, helping Duke to the 9-2 win. Van Orden struck out four, held Miami to three hits and allowed just one runner to advance to third and another to second for the game. The Blue Devil bats totaled a season-high-tying 13 hits for the second straight game to build a 9-0 lead heading in the ninth. Junior Jordan Betts was 3-for-5 on the day with an RBI, while classmate Matt Berezo turned in a 2-for-5 performance with a pair of RBI. Sophomore Andy Perez served as the catalyst, going 2-for-4 with a career-high three runs scored.
Perez turned in a standout weekend for the Blue Devils, posting a .500 average (6-for-12) with four runs scored against the Hurricanes. Since moving to the leadoff spot February 27, Perez is hitting .351 and is currently riding an eight-game hit streak heading into Tuesday's matchup with N.C. Central.
Miami took advantage of seven walks and a pair of hit batters in Sunday's series finale, defeating Duke 5-3. Perez went 2-for-4 for the third straight game, adding a double and an RBI, while senior Jeff Kremer was also 2-for-4 at the plate.
N.C. Central is 9-7 (2-1 MEAC) on the season after a 2-1 weekend versus league opponent North Carolina A&T. The Blue Devils are undefeated in 10 meetings with the Eagles, including a 17-3 victory Feb. 22, 2012 at the Durham Athletic Park.
Quinnipiac brings a 4-2 (0-0 NEC) overall record into the week as the Bobcats face NC State Tuesday in Raleigh. Duke holds a 5-0 record against Quinnipiac in the all-time series. Wednesday's game marks the two teams' first meeting since 2010.
Duke returns to ACC action with a three-game series against conference foe Virginia Tech at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park. The Blue Devils and the Hokies meet at 6 p.m., Friday in game one.