Burleson shines as No. 12 ECU tops Tulane 8-3 to win series
NEW ORLEANS, La. – Alec Burleson worked a career-high 7.1 innings where he struck out a personal-best seven batters, while Dwanya Williams-Sutton hit a pair of home runs helping No. 12 ECU to an 8-3 American Athletic Conference series win over Tulane Saturday afternoon at Greer Field inside Turchin Stadium.
With the win the Pirates improve to 32-12 on the season and 10-7 in league play, while the Green Wave fall to 22-26 and 7-10 in the conference.
How It Happened:
For the second-straight game, ECU jumped out to an early lead plating a run in the second for a 1-0 advantage. Jake Washer walked, Connor Litton reached on an infield single and both runners moved up 90 feet on Andrew Henrickson’s sac bunt. Two batters later Jeremy Whitehead loaded the bases with another walk before Washer crossed home on a Keagan Gillies balk. The Pirates extended their lead to four, 4-0, scoring three runs in the third. Williams-Sutton blasted a two-run homer to left field that scored Packard before him and Brady Lloyd singled to center with two runners on scoring Washer. Tyler Heinrichs got a run back for Tulane with a solo shot left field in the home half of the third making it a 4-1 game. Litton’s second hit of the game, single through the left side, scored Spencer Brickhouse from third pushing ECU’s lead back to four, 5-1. ECU added a run in the seventh on Litton’s sac fly to center that pushed across Brickhouse extending the lead to five, 6-1. Tulane pushed a couple across in the eighth on a Frankie Neimann RBI single and a bases loaded walk by Grant Witherspoon. The Pirates capped the scoring plating two more in the ninth on Williams-Sutton’s second homer of the day (solo) and a Lloyd bases loaded walk for an 8-3 series clinching win.
“I thought we played as well as we have in a long time today. Obviously, it starts on the mound with (Alec) Burleson, but I thought we executed what we were trying to do offensively as good as we have done all year against their guy, who had the best numbers and who has been pitching well the last couple weekends. I thought our guys got to the plate with a plan and executed at a high level. Dwayna (Williams-Sutton) had a big day with two home runs and I thought everybody up and down the lineup had tough at-bats and that’s what it takes when you face a good pitcher.”
Burleson (3-1) picked up the win allowing three runs (all earned) on four hits with seven strikeouts and no walks in his career-high 7.1 innings. Zach Barnes notched his second save of the year tossing 1.2 scoreless frames where he walked one and struck out one. Gavin Williams faced just one batter, which he walked.
Green Wave Staff:
Gillies (5-5) took the loss after surrendering five runs (three earned) on four hits with five walks and three strikeouts in four-plus innings. Will McAffer was touched for three runs (two earned) on six hits with four punch outs in 4.1 innings, while Ryan Green walked a pair in two-thirds of an inning.
The Pirates pounded out 10 hits on the night improving to 19-2 when they reach the double-digit hit mark. Litton (15 games), Lloyd (15 games) and Williams-Sutton (nine games) each had two hits in the game. Williams Sutton drove in a game-best three runs, while Litton and Lloyd plated a pair. Brickhouse crossed home three times, while Washer and Williams-Sutton both scored twice.
Burleson recorded his first career quality start going 7.1 innings against the Wave … He fanned a career-best seven batters without issuing a walk and at one point retired 14 consecutive batters from the third to the eighth frame … The lefty struck out the side in the second and had two more in the fifth … In all, he punched out at least one batter in four of seven full innings of work.
Things To Know:
Packard extended his hit streak to 22 games in the sixth (single to right) and his on-base streak to 27 games with a walk to start the game in the first … Currently tied for fourth on ECU’s all-time hit streak list with Dustin Harrington (2009-10 season) …
Williams-Sutton belted his 14th and 15th home runs of his career with his two on the day … Hit marks the second time in his career that he has registered a multi-HR game (other: Liberty on Marcy 28, 2017) …
Brickhouse pushed his on-base streak to 14 games with a walk in the fifth inning …
The Pirates top four hitters in the lineup collected five hits, drove in three and scored all eight runs …
ECU improved to 16-2 on the road with the win owns the second-best road ledger in the nation …
The victory for the Pirates marked their first series win in New Orleans since 2013 …
ECU will look to complete the series sweep of Tulane on Sunday, May 6 when it returns to the diamond for a 1 p.m. (ET) scheduled first pitch.