Six Pirate batters collected at least two hits which was highlighted by a three-hit performance from Ryan Wood and Corey Kemp as No. 30 East Carolina cruised past UAB 13-6 in Conference USA play Friday night at Lewis Field inside Clark-LeClair Stadium. With the win the Pirates extended its current winning streak to seven games and has now won 11 consecutive home games.
The Pirate (34-13, 9-7 C-USA) hitters pounded out 16 hits on the night with four home runs with all but one starter recording a hit. Wood and Kemp each drove in four runs and Jamie Ray plated three to combine for 11 of ECU’s 13 runs.
Freshman Seth Maness had another solid outing on the hill improving to 8-0 on the season after working seven innings where he allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits. Maness recorded seven punch outs with five coming in the first two frames and did not allow a walk. Matt Cox relieved Maness in the eighth giving up two runs on two walks without retiring a batter. Junior transfer Daniel Holder closed the final two frames surrendering one run on two this with three strikeouts. In all, the Pirate pitchers struck out 10 Blazer (19-25, 4-12 C-USA) batters while walking three.
James Oliver fell to 4-3 on the year lasting 3.2 innings where he gave up nine runs (all earned) on 11 hits with three walks and one walk. Johnny Volk closed the game allowing four runs on five hits with two strikeouts and a walk in 4.1 innings.
ECU jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the second on Dustin Harrington’s RBI single. Kemp led off the frame with a single to right then took third on Kyle Roller’s two-out single up the middle. Harrington plated Kemp when he singled up the middle.
Kemp highlighted a four-run third inning with his 13th home run of the season putting the Pirates up 5-0. Harrison Eldridge singled through the left side to start the third then moved to third on Wood’s single to right. Eldridge scored on an Oliver wild pitch that also moved Wood to second. Stephen Batts drew a walk just before Kemp’s bomb to right field that cleared the bases.
Ray highlighted another four-run inning pushing the Pirates lead to 9-0. With two outs in the frame, Batts singled up the middle then came home on Kemp’s fourth RBI of the contest, a single down the right field line. Henderson followed with a walk and Ray homered for the second consecutive game plating three runs.
UAB cut into the Pirates lead in the fifth on a two-run home run by Brint Hardy making the score 9-2. Luke Stewart singled to right to start the inning then game home on Hardy’s shot to left-center.
Wood smacked a home run in the fifth (three-run) and the seventh (solo) for his ninth and 10th shots of the year.
UAB plated a run in the seventh, two in the eighth and one in the ninth to close the game at 13-6.
The two teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday afternoon due to potential inclement weather on Sunday. Game one will start at 3 p.m. with a 45 minute break in between games.
· Attendance: 3,272 (25th largest at Clark-LeClair Stadium).
· Seth Maness picked up his team-best eighth win of the season improving to 8-0. He struck out seven batters on the evening marking the seventh time in 11 started that he has fanned at least seven hitters in a contest. It was also the fifth straight game with at least seven strikeouts.
· Harrison Eldridge extended his current hitting streak to a season-high seven games with his single to left to lead off the first inning. He finished the night going 2-for-4 picking up his 77th career multi-hit game.
· Corey Kemp blasted his 13th home run of the season in the third inning, a three-run shot. With his four RBI in the game he now has 55 RBI on the season. He finished the game 3-for-5 marking the 32nd multi-hit game of his career.
· Jamie Ray hit his third home run of the season with a three-run shot to right field in the fourth. In his last seven games he has 12 hits, 17 RBI and scored five runs.
· Ryan Wood hit two home runs on the night, his ninth and 10th of the season, marking the third time in his career he had multi-HR game. Wood finished the game going 3-for-5 with four RBI and three runs.
· ECU’s 13 runs in the game is the 18th time this season they have reached the double-digit mark. When scoring 10 or more runs, the Pirates are 18-0.
· ECU had 16 hits on the night marking the 32nd time this season they have reached double-digits.