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No. 24 UNC defeats No. 8 ECU baseball, 8-1

Justice Thompson reached base four times and scored three runs for the Tar Heels
Published: Mar. 23, 2021 at 10:24 PM EDT|Updated: Mar. 24, 2021 at 10:29 AM EDT
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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (ECU) – Justice Thompson reached base four times and scored three runs leading No. 24 North Carolina to an 8-1 win over No. 8 East Carolina Tuesday night at Boshamer Stadium. With the win the Tar Heels improve to 13-6 on the season while the Pirates fall to 16-4.

With the game tied at one-all in the third inning, The Tar Heels scored a pair of runs retaking the lead at 3-1. Thompson singled up the middle to get things going and Caleb Roberts followed with a base hit through the right side putting runners on the corners. Danny Serretti’s RBI ground out scored Thompson and two batters later Tomas Frick doubled off the right field wall pushing across Roberts.

Nik Pry (1-2) earned the win tossing 3.1 scoreless innings of relief with two hits and five strikeouts, Starter Will Sandy gave up one run (earned) on six hits with a walk in 4.2 innings before passing the ball to Pry in the fifth frame. Connor Ollio came in and worked a perfect ninth inning to preserve the win.

Tyler Smith (0-1) suffered his first loss of the season after being touched for three runs (all earned) on six hits with a pair of walks and two strikeouts in 2.2 innings. Cam Colmore worked 1.2 innings out of the bullpen giving up two runs (one earned) with a pair of walks and two strikeouts. From there, ECU used six additional pitchers in relief getting outings from AJ Wilson (0.1 IP, 1 BB), Matt Bridges (0.1 IP), Nick Logusch (0.0 IP, 1 R), Danny Beal (0.2 IP, 1 BB), Skylar Brooks (0.2 IP, 1 R) and Trystan Kimmel (1.2 IP, 1 R).

UNC wasted little time in getting on the board scoring a run in the first inning for a 1-0 lead. Thompson drew a one-out walk and took second on Roberts’ single back to the mound. Serretti followed with a double to right center pushing across Thompson.

The Pirates responded with a run in the second knotting the game at one-all. Josh Moylan singled up the middle with one out, took second on a Sandy wild pitch and third on Alec Makarewicz’ ground out. Ben Newton beat out an infield single to second that plated Moylan.

UNC padded its lead to four, 5-1, with a pair of runs in the fifth inning. Once again, Thompson got things going with a walk and then stole second base, the first of two on the night. Roberts followed with another walk and three batters later Frick singled down the left field line allowing Thompson to cross home from second. Jake Holtzapple’s pinch-hit RBI single scored Roberts from third to account for the second run. Johnny Castagnozzi (sixth inning) and Frick (seventh inning) hit solo home runs to right field capping the scoring at 7-1.

The Pirates tallied eight hits with Newton leading the way going 2-for-4 with an RBI. Thomas Francisco and Connor Norby also had base knocks that extended their on-base streaks. Additionally, Zach Agnos, Ryder Giles, Moylan and Bryson Worrell registered a hit in the contest.

ECU returns home for a three-game series against St. John’s starting Friday, March 26. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m. (ET) at Lewis Field inside Clark-LeClair Stadium and will be streamed on ECUPirates.com.

POST-GAME NOTES

  • For the fourth consecutive game, ECU opponent scored the game’s first run in the bottom of the first … It marked the eighth time this season ECU’s opponent scored first; however they own a 6-2 record when that happens … Under seventh-year head coach Cliff Godwin, the Pirates are 72-75 when their opponents score first.
  • Connor Norby extended his on-base streak to 27 games dating back to last season with single in the fifth inning.
  • Thomas Francisco extended his on-base streak to 20 games with his infield single in the first fifth.

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