East Carolina blanks Central Florida 4-0 to advance to AAC Championship Game
CLEARWATER, Fla. – Jake Agnos tossed seven scoreless innings, while Spencer Brickhouse and Travis Watkins each hit solo home runs helping No. 8 seed East Carolina to a 4-0 win over top seed UCF Saturday afternoon at Spectrum Field.
With the win the Pirates improved to 32-27 overall and advance to the American Athletic Conference Baseball Championship Game on Sunday, May 28 with a 12 Noon (ET) scheduled first pitch on ESPNews. The Knights dropped to 40-20 on the season with the loss.
Jake Agnos (3-3) picked up the win allowing two hits (third and seventh innings), walked three and struck out six – including the side in the sixth inning. Tyler Smith surrendered one hit in 1.1 innings of relief, while Matt Bridges worked two-thirds of an inning with one strikeout.
Jason Bahr (0-2) took the loss giving up a pair of runs (all earned) on three hits with five strikeouts in four innings. Bryce Tucker was touched for a pair of unearned runs on one hit with two walks and one strikeout out of the pen and Jordan Scheftz tossed two scoreless frames with two walks and two punch outs.
Watkins tallied two of ECU’s four hits and drove in two runs one of which came on his 10th home run of the season. Brickhouse also belted a solo home run, his 10th of the year. Eric Tyler recorded the other hit for ECU – a single to left field in the fourth.
Ryan Thomas recorded two hits and walked once to lead the Knights. Eli Putnam also had a base knock on the day.
How It Happened
ECU jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first thanks to Watkins’ solo blast to left-center with two outs.
Brickhouse added to the Pirates lead, 2-0, with a solo shot of his own in the fourth frame over the left-center field wall.
The Pirates plated a pair of runs in the top of the seventh for a 4-0 advantage. With two outs and Wes Phillips standing on first, Charlie Yorgen sent a 1-1 offering to right field where Putnam misplayed the ball scoring Phillips and putting Yorgen on third. Watkins followed with an RBI single up the middle to cap the frame.
Andrew Henrickson helped to keep the Knights scoreless when he made a leaping catch at the wall to pull a would-be home run back to start the bottom of the sixth. Henrickson made another tough catch at the warning track for the second out of the inning and the Pirates caught a UCF baserunner off third base on the play for a big inning-ending double play.