TULSA, Okla. – The East Carolina softball team avoided a series sweep by Tulsa, defeating the Golden Hurricane 5-3 on Sunday at the Hardesty Softball Complex. The Pirates improve to 24-15 overall and 5-4 in C-USA while Tulsa falls to 20-16 on the season and 7-5 in conference play.
ECU moved ahead 3-0 in the top of the first. Christina Merrida walked to lead off the inning and moved to second when Charina Sumner laid down a sacrifice bunt. After Jessica Johnson singled to left field, Vanessa Moreno belted pitch over the left field wall for her third home run of the season. The Golden Hurricane drew within 3-1 in the bottom of the first when Lauren Lindsay tagged a 1-1 pitch over the left field wall.
Tulsa tied the contest in the bottom of the second when with one out and runners on second and third, Lindsay picked up her second and third RBI of the game with a single to center. Lindsay moved into scoring position with two outs, but Swann was able to induce a flyout from Sara Dyer to end the threat.
In the top of the third, the Pirates earned the winning run off of a RBI-single by Moreno that scored Sumner. Sumner had singled to lead off the inning. Tiffany Shaw doubled to begin the top of the fourth, leading to East Carolina’s fifth run. After Tom singled and stole second, Shaw scored on a throwing error by the Golden Hurricane catcher who tried to catch Tom stealing.
Christian Timmons led off the bottom of the fifth with a double, but she would be stranded as with one out, Vanessa Vice lined out to Charina Sumner in right field as she was alsoable to catch Timmons off the bag at second. Swann shut down Tulsa over the last two innings, recording three strikeouts in six at bats to close the contest.
Swann threw her 15th complete game of the season in the win, improving her record to 14-11. The junior gave up just three earned runs while scattering six hits and striking out six, her highest strikeout total since she fanned seven against Maine on Feb. 17. Moreno tallied a season-high four RBI for the Pirates, hitting 3-for-4 on the contest. The RBI mark ties her single game career-high.
ECU finishes its 10-game road swing on Wednesday in Chapel Hill as it takes on No. 19 North Carolina in a doubleheader affair. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. at Anderson Stadium.