NORFOLK, Va. – On a day when offense proved to be scarce, No. 14 East Carolina scored three in the top of the 13th inning to pick up a 4-1 non-conference victory over Old Dominion Wednesday evening at Bud Matheny Ballpark.
The Pirates (35-14) captured their fourth straight road win to improve that metric to 9-9 while the Monarchs (30-18) lost for the fourth time in their last six outings. ECU left 12 runners on base but racked up 11 hits and received 18 strikeouts from a combination of six Pirate pitchers.
Wyatt Lunsford-Shenkman (4-2) was sensational once more in recording his second win in a matter of four days. The reigning American Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Week proved the league office right as he tossed three scoreless innings and allowed just one hit while striking out four. Garrett Saylor was spectacular as well to start the game, lasting 3.2 scoreless frames and racking up six strikeouts. Landen Burch (2-3) was the losing pitcher, surrendering three runs (two earned) on five hits with one strikeout in three innings of work.
Lane Hoover and Carter Cunningham both collected two hits while Ryley Johnson and Alec Makarewicz teamed up to deliver the three crucial RBI in the 13th frame. Kenny Levari tallied two of Old Dominion’s three hits.
East Carolina threatened in the top of the first as Hoover led off with a sharp single up the middle and moved to second on a grounder before advancing to third on a deep fly ball to right. Luke Nowak attempted to score him by laying down a bunt, but Monarch starter Vincent Bashara handled the ball and completed the throw to first for the third out.
The Pirates were able to load the bases up in the top of the fourth. Josh Moylan led things off with a single to shallow left and Nowak followed with a one-out single to center. The runners moved into scoring position thanks to a wild pitch, but after Dixon Williams drew a two-out walk, Robert Cook was able to corral a ball near the mound and toss it to first to complete the frame.
After Saylor allowed his first base runner of the day in the bottom of fourth via a Levari seeing eye single through the right side, he coaxed a groundout from Hunter Fitz-Gerald before giving way to Danny Beal who walked the first batter he saw but Moylan made a nice diving grab at first to terminate the threat and keep things scoreless.
ECU finally broke through in the top of the seventh thanks to a Jacob Jenkins-Cowart two-out RBI single. Makarewicz began the frame with a walk and trotted to second on Joey Berini’s single through the left side before crossing home on Jenkins-Cowart’s base knock between second and third.
The Pirates entered the bottom of the ninth needing just three outs to complete the shutout, but Levari put a 2-2 pitch into the jet stream in left field and the ball carried over the wall for a game-tying solo shot.
Neither side produced much of a threat until the 13th inning. Cunningham started the frame with a single to right and took second on a Nowak sac bunt. A strikeout left East Carolina with just one out to play with, but Nathan Chrismon ripped a ball up the middle that hit one of the umpires and allowed the freshman to reach base. Johnson then found the outfield grass in left to plate Cunningham before Makarewicz laced a two-run single to right to put the Pirates ahead by three. Landon Ginn quickly set the home side down in order with two strikeouts to seal his first save of the campaign.
- East Carolina completed the season series sweep of Old Dominion.
- Dixon Williams made his first collegiate start in the contest, taking the field at second base.
- The Pirates improved to 4-2 in extra-inning contests and ran their record to 23-2 when scoring first.
- ECU pitchers struck out double-digit batters for the 25th time this season while the offense registered 10 or more hits for the 26th time.
- The contest lasted four hours and four minutes, representing the second-longest game of the season behind the 12-inning win over UCF on April 7 that lasted 4:18.
Up Next: East Carolina returns home this weekend for its final home American Athletic Conference series of the campaign as it welcomes Memphis to Lewis Field at Clark-LeClair Stadium.