CLEARWATER, Florida – East Carolina outlasted Cincinnati, 9-6, in an elimination game at the 2023 American Baseball Championship presented by Visit St. Pete Clearwater Wednesday at BayCare Ballpark.
The two teams outlasted a 4-hour, 20-minute weather delay in the middle of the fourth inning.
The Pirates (42-16) advance to take on the loser of Thursday’s game between UCF and South Florida on Friday at 1 p.m. ET on ESPN+. Cincinnati concludes its season with a record of 24-33.
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The two teams’ bats came out firing before the weather delay. The Pirates scored two in the bottom of the first, before Kerrington Cross hit a 2-run home run for the Bearcats to tie the game. ECU responded with three in the bottom of the third before Cole Harting launched a grand slam in the top of the fourth.
After the delay, ECU’s Danny Beal and Cincinnati’s Mitch White calmed the bats down by combining to record 14 consecutive outs. After having six hits before the delay, the Bearcats were limited to one after the break.
East Carolina tied the game in the sixth on a bases-loaded walk by Jacob Jenkins-Cowart, and took the lead on a 2-run double by Jacob Starling in the eighth inning. Carter Cunningham scored on a wild pitch in the ninth to provide an insurance run.
Carter Spivey (7-3) earned the win after throwing 1.2 scoreless innings of relief, while Trey Yesavage came on and struck out three in the ninth for his first save of the season. Max Bergmann (1-2) took the loss for Cincinnati.
2023 American Athletic Conference Baseball Championship presented by Visit St. Pete Clearwater
BayCare Ballpark | Clearwater, Fla.
All Times Eastern
Game 1: No. 4 UCF 4, No. 5 Cincinnati 3
Game 2: No. 8 South Florida 12, No. 1 East Carolina 11 (11 innings)
Game 3: No. 7 Tulane 10, No. 2 Houston 8
Game 4: No. 6 Memphis 10, No. 3 Wichita State 6
Game 5: No. 1 East Carolina 9, No. 5 Cincinnati 6
Game 6: No. 3 Wichita State vs. No. 2 Houston | 9 a.m. | ESPN+
Game 7: No. 8 South Florida vs. No. 4 UCF | 1 p.m. | ESPN+
Game 8: No. 7 Tulane vs. No. 6 Memphis | 47 minutes after Game 7 | ESPN+
Game 9: Game 7 Loser vs. No. 1 East Carolina | 1 p.m. | ESPN+
Game 10: Game 6 Winner vs. Game 8 Loser | 47 minutes after Game 9 | ESPN+
Game 11: Game 9 Winner vs. Game 7 Winner | 9 a.m. | ESPN+
Game 12: Game 10 Winner vs. Game 8 Winner | 47 minutes after Game 11 | ESPN+
Game 13: Game 9 Winner vs. Game 7 Winner (If Necessary) | TBD | ESPN+
Game 14: Game 10 Winner vs. Game 8 Winner (If Necessary) | TBD | ESPN+
Game 15: Semifinal Winners | Noon | ESPNEWS and ESPN+