ECU drops midweek game at #4 UNC, 3-2 in 11 innings
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Ashton McGee’s RBI single in the bottom of the 11th lifted No. 4 North Carolina to a 3-2 win over East Carolina in 11 innings Tuesday night at Boshamer Stadium. With the win, the Tar Heels improve to 23-6 on the season while the Pirates fall to 18-12 on the year.
Austin Bergner (2-1) picked up the win in relief tossing two scoreless frames where he allowed a pair of hits and struck out two. Starter Tyler Baum surrendered one run (earned) on three hits with a pair of walks and three strikeouts in three innings. UNC also got pitching outings from Rodney Hutchinson, Jr. (3.0 IP, 3 Hs, 1 R, 5 Ks), Brett Daniels (2.0 IP, 1 H, 2 Ks) and Josh Hiatt (1.0 IP, 2 Hs, 2 Ks) out of the bullpen.
Joe Ingle (3-3) took the loss giving up the game-winning run in the 11th on a single to right-center. The righty also issued two walks in two-thirds of an inning. Making his first start since February of 2016, Kirk Morgan allowed two runs (both earned) without surrendering a hit, but walked two and hit a pair of batters with one strikeout in three frames. Sam Lanier (2.0 IP, 2 Hs, 2 Ks), Matt Bridges (2.0 IP, 3 Hs, 4 Ks) and Tyler Smith (3.0 IP, 1 H, 2 Ks) had scoreless outings in relief.
The Pirates held the advantage in the hit column pounding out 11 base knocks and getting multiple hits from Dusty Baker, Turner Brown, T.J. Riles and Eric Tyler, while Spencer Brickhouse extended his hit streak to six games with a single in the eighth inning. Brown (ground out) and Riles (single) drove in ECU’s two runs on the night.
Zak Gahagan and Logan Warmoth collected a pair of hits for the Tar Heels, while Michael Busch (walk), McGee (single) and Cody Roberts (single) drove in runs.
How It Happened:
With the game knotted at two-all in the bottom of the 11th, McGee sent a 2-2 offering from Ingle to deep right-center field and just out of the reach of Riles scoring Adam Pate from third base for a 3-2 UNC win. Gahagan was hit by an Ingle pitch and immediately lifted for Pate as a pinch runner. Busch moved him over to second on a sac bunt before Roberts and Warmoth drew walks to load the bases with two outs setting up McGee’s game-winning single.
ECU jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the second thanks to Riles’ RBI single. Tyler, who has now reached base safely in 16-straight games, doubled to start the stanza and came around on Riles’ one-out RBI single to left center.
UNC took the lead in the home half of the second scoring a pair of runs for a 2-1 advantage. With the bases loaded, Busch drew a walk plating Kyle Datres and Roberts followed with a sac fly to right field pushing across Tyler Lynn.
Brown’s RBI ground out in the top of the seventh tied the game at two-all. Baker singled and took second on Charlie Yorgen’s walk before a Daniels passed ball moved the runners up 90-feet. Brown rolled over on Daniels pitch grounding out to second easily plating Baker for the game-tying run.
ECU will continue its four-game road trip heading to Houston this weekend for an American Athletic Conference series, which is set to begin Friday, April 7 at 7:30 p.m. (ET).