ECU baseball drops to 0-10 in conference play
CINCINNATI, Ohio – J.T. Perez tossed seven scoreless innings with a season-high eight strikeouts, while Treg Haberkorn drove in three runs helping Cincinnati to an 8-2 American Athletic Conference series opening win over ECU Friday night at Marge Schott Stadium. With the win the Bearcats improve to 20-18 overall and 5-5 in league play, while the Pirates fall to 20-19 and 0-10 in conference action.
Perez (2-5) held the Pirates off the scoreboard allowing seven hits and walking one. The lefty fanned at least one batter in four of his seven frames and had two strikeouts in three innings. Tristian Hammans gave up two runs (both earned) on three hits with two walks and one punch out in his two innings of relief work.
Trey Benton (3-2) took the loss allowing four runs (three earned) on six hits with a walk, two hit batters and three strikeouts. The Pirates used three arms out of the bullpen getting outings from Sam Lanier (0.0 IP, 2 Rs, 2 ERs), Davis Kirkpatrick (1.2 IP, 2 Rs, 1 ER) and Ryan Ross (1.0 IP, 2 Ks).
Five Bearcats tallied two hits on the night in Austin Bumpass, Haberkorn, Manny Rodriguez, Joey Thomas and R.J. Thompson. Haberkorn led the club with three RBI and scored a pair of runs, while Rodriguez drove in two.
Tyler led the Pirates with three hits (double, two singles) and extended his on-base streak to 25 games. Turner Brown and Charlie Yorgen each added a pair of base knocks, while T.J. Riles (home run) and Yorgen drove in the lone runs of the contest.
How It Happened:
Cincinnati jumped out to an early 2-0 lead scoring a pair of runs in the third frame. With one out and Thomas standing on third, Haberkorn singled up the middle plating the game’s first run. The Bearcats loaded the bases with two outs before adding another run when Ryan Noda was plunked by a Benton pitch pushing across Thompson.
Connor McVey’s infield bunt single extended the Bearcats lead to 3-0 in the fifth. Haberkorn was hit by a Benton pitch to start the inning and took second on Thompson’s sac bunt. Bumpass’ second hit of the game moved Haberkorn to third before McVey’s bunt down the first base line plated Haberkorn.
Haberkorn’s two-RBI triple and Thompson’s RBI base hit pushed Cincinnati’s lead to 6-0 in the sixth. With one away, Thomas doubled to left-center and Rodriguez followed with a single to right center just before Haberkorn cleared the bases with his three-base hit down the right field line. Thompson drove in Haberkorn with a single to right to cap the frame.
Cincinnati scored two more runs in the seventh on Rodriguez’ two-RBI single up the middle making it an 8-0 lead and capping the scoring for the Bearcats.
ECU snapped a 17-inning scoreless streak in American play when Riles belted a pinch-hit solo home run off Hammans in the ninth inning. Two batters later Tyler followed with his third hit of the game with a single up the middle and came around to score on Yorgen’s first triple of the season for an 8-2 final.
ECU and Cincinnati will play game two of the three-game set Saturday, April 22 with a 4 p.m. (ET) scheduled first pitch.