No. 7 ECU falls to South Florida 5-4, drops first series of season
GREENVILLE, N.C. – David Villar’s solo home run in the seventh inning proved to be the game-winning hit as USF claimed an American Athletic Conference series win at No. 7 ECU with a 5-4 victory Sunday afternoon at Lewis Field inside Clark-LeClair Stadium. With the win, the Bulls improve to 23-13 overall and 7-5 in league play while the Pirates drop to 26-9 on the season and 6-3 in the conference.
How It Happened:
For the third-straight game USF jumped out to an early lead scoring a pair of runs in the first inning for a 2-0 advantage. Coco Montes singled to start the frame and two batters later David Villar drew a walk before they both came home on Chris Chatfield’s two-RBI double down the right field line. ECU took its first lead of the game in the third on Jake Washer’s three-run homer to right field making it a 3-2 ball game. With two outs, Brady Lloyd doubled down the right field line and Spencer Brickhouse followed with a walk before coming around to score on Washer’s fifth home run of the season. But the Bulls responded with a pair in the fourth for a 4-3 lead. Garrett Zech plated JD Dutka on a fielder’s choice and Tyler Dietrich followed with an RBI single to center pushing across Zech. Villar’s solo blast to right center added to USF’s lead making it a 5-3 game in the seventh frame. ECU plated one run in the eighth to pull within one, 5-4, on Bryant Packard’s single up the middle the scored Dwanya Williams-Sutton from second base.
“We liked our chances late in the game, but their closer is really good. It was tough to get one run against him and he was out there for two innings. But we put ourselves in a position to score some runs, but it can go either way and today it went in their favor. We didn’t play quite well today all around, not just offensively, pitching or on defense and they played well enough to win.”
Trey Benton (4-5) suffered the loss allowing four runs (all earned) on four hits with a walk and one strikeout in 3.1 innings. Ryan Ross, one of four relievers on the day, tossed 1.2 scoreless frames where he gave up three hits and struck out one. Davis Kirkpatrick (3.1 IP, 2 Hs, 1 R, 6 Ks), Jake Agnos (0.0 IP, 1 H, 1 BB) and Zach Barnes (0.2 IP) also pitched for the Pirates out of the bullpen.
Alec Wisley (2-0) got the win working 2.2 shutout frames where he allowed two hits and fanned six. Starter Collin Sullivan was touched for three runs (all earned) on four hits with two walks and four strikeouts in his 3.1 innings. Also, coming out of the bullpen for USF was Kevin King (1.0 IP, 1 H, 2 Ks) and closer Andrew Perez (2.0 IP, 3 Hs, 1 R, 2 Ks), who notched his fifth save of the season.
The Pirates managed 10 hits on the afternoon getting multiple base knocks from Brady Lloyd (3) and Williams-Sutton (2). Washer belted his fifth homer of the season and drove in three runs, while Packard plated a run late in the game which extended his hit streak to a personal-best 13 games.
Lloyd tallied his team-leading 14th multi-hit game with a 3-for-5 performance at the plate … He registered a pair of doubles (third and fifth innings) and capped the day with a single up the middle in the seventh.
Things To Know:
ECU fell to 15-2 on the season when tallying double-digit hits …
The Pirates dropped their first weekend series of the year, which was also their first set back in a Game 3 … They are now 8-1 (four shutouts) in Game 3’s and have outscored their opponents 73-18 …
Packard also extended his on-base streak to 18 games with his single in the eighth frame …
Washer pushed his hit streak to 11 games with his three-run homer in the third …
Andrew Henrickson’s hit streak moved to a personal-best nine games with a single in the second …
The Pirates are 17-13 all-time against the Bulls (4-10 under Godwin) …
ECU returns to the diamond on Tuesday, April 17 when it travels to instate foe No. 4 Duke for the first of five-straight road games. First pitch of the midweek clash is schedule for 6 p.m. (ET).