NCCU’s Vernon Makes History with First No-Hitter in Modern Era against Delaware State

DURHAM, N.C. – North Carolina Central University junior Austin Vernon (Raleigh, N.C.) faced just one over the minimum as he tossed eight strikeouts in eight innings of work, and authored the first no-hitter at NCCU in the modern era as the Eagles defeated Delaware State, 10-0, on Friday, May 7 at the Durham Athletic Park.

Vernon lowered his season ERA to 2.73 and picked up his fourth win of the season, as well as his second complete game shutout within his last three starts.

NCCU (19-17, 11-10 MEAC) got on the board in a loud way in the bottom of the second, and took a 3-0 lead on a pair of home runs from Chet Sikes (Trinity, N.C.) and Cameron Norgren (Cary, N.C.).  Sikes hit a solo homer out to right, and then two batters later Norgren deposited a two-run shot onto the roof of the warehouse in right center.

The Eagles then tacked on their third dinger of the day in the bottom of the third on a solo blast by Tristan Shea(Charlotte, N.C.) to move ahead, 4-0, as the Eagles tied their mark for most home runs in a game this year with three, set against Norfolk State on Feb. 27.

NCCU broke out for four runs in the bottom of the sixth as it sent all nine batters to the plate, and scored its runs on a pair of wild pitches, an RBI single by Kokko Figueiredo (Fortuna, Calif.), and a sacrifice fly by Jacob Raby (Granite Falls, N.C.) to push the lead to 8-0.

The only base runner Vernon allowed came on a full-count walk with two outs in the top of the seventh, but he quickly finished the inning by inducing a grounder to the next batter.

The Eagles brought the game to an early end with a pair of bases-loaded walks in the bottom of the eighth to send the game to its final score of 10-0, and confirm Vernon’s no-hitter.

Vernon struck out the final batter he faced in the contest, and that was his 87th of the year to tie Devin Sweet (Greensboro, N.C.) for the single-season record, a mark set in 2018.

NCCU and DSU (13-21, 11-13 MEAC) will meet for a doubleheader on Saturday, May 8 at 3:00 p.m. to continue the weekend series.

Courtesy of North Carolina Central University Sports Information Department

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