COVID scare impacts NC State at College World Series

The Wolfpack’s run at the College World Series hit a speed bump with a delay due to “health and safety protocols”

North Carolina State personnel chat in the dugout during a delay due to COVID-19 safety protocols before their baseball game against Vanderbilt in the College World Series Friday, June 25, 2021, at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Neb. (AP Photo/Rebecca S. Gratz)

OMAHA, Neb. — After waiting four days for their next game at the College World Series, the wait increased a bit for NC State.

The Wolfpack’s game with Vanderbilt, with a berth in the Championship Series at stake, was delayed an hour due to what was officially termed “health and safety protocols.”

According to reports from a variety of outlets, including ESPN, at least one NC State player tested positive for COVID-19, and other players may be impacted by contact tracing.

ESPN reported that infielder JT Jarrett and reliever Evan Justice are not on the field, and there were reports that up to three players may be currently quarantined in the clubhouse.

The game is expected to be played, with a 3:07 p.m. Eastern start time, an hour later than originally scheduled.

Coach Elliott Avent said after Monday’s win over Vanderbilt that “a bug” had been going around the team, specifically mentioning Jarrett as one of the players affected, along with Cameron Cotter and assistant coach Chris Hart.

State needs one win over Vanderbilt, either today or Saturday, to advance, while Vanderbilt needs to sweep both games.

The official lineup has not been released, but it’s expected to look very different from the relatively stable starting nine the Wolfpack has used this season.