No. 11 ECU completed a doubleheader sweep of Radford on Opening Day of the 2019 Collegiate Baseball season earning a 6-2 win in game one and a 15-9 victory in the night cap. With the wins, the Pirates are 2-0 on the young season while the Highlanders are 0-2.
Trey Benton (1-0) notched the win in the early contest tossing 2.1 scoreless innings in relief with a walk and a strikeout. Starter Alec Burleson went five innings surrendering a pair of runs (both earned) on three hits with four punch outs and a free pass. Cam Colmore (0.2 IP) and Ryder Giles (1.0 IP, 1 K) combined to work the final 1.2 frames.
Austin Gerber (0-1) suffered the loss for Radford allowing two runs (both earned) on three hits with a walk and a strikeout in 1.1 relief innings. Starter Zack Ridgely was touched for a pair of runs (both earned) on six hits with three free passes and five strikeouts in 4.2 frames. Bruce Hudson closed out the contest surrendering two runs (both earned) on four hits over two innings.
ECU jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the first stanza on Burleson’s RBI single to right field that scored Bryson Worrell from second base. Worrell got the frame going when he reached on an infield single and moved to second on Spencer Brickhouse’s walk before darting home on the first of Burleson’s four base knocks in the contest.
Radford took a 2-1 lead in the third on solo home runs from Garrett Matheny (left field) and Kyle Butler (right field). But the Pirates knotted the game at two-all in the home half of the inning on Brady Lloyd’s RBI sac bunt. Jake Washer singled with one out and took third on Burleson’s base hit through the right side. Lloyd placed a bunt to the left of the pitcher’s mound allowing Washer to score with ease.
Brickhouse’s two-run homer to right gave ECU the lead at 4-2, which it wouldn’t relinquish. With two away, Worrell single to center and took second on a wild pitch before Brickhouse deposited a 3-1 pitch over the wall for his third-straight Opening Day home run.
ECU added a pair of runs in the seventh capping the scoring at 6-2. Bryant Packard’s sac fly with the bases juiced plated Lane Hoover and Brickhouse singled through the right side pushing across Turner Brown.
Offensively, the Pirates pounded out 13 hits getting multiple base knocks from Brickhouse (two), Burleson (four, career-high) and Worrell (two). Brickhouse drove in three of the six runs, while Worrell scored twice (team-high).
ECU rolled to a game two victory after scoring 10 runs in the second stanza on nine hits to take a 13-3 lead. Trailing 2-0 after Andrew Szamski’s two-run homer in the first, the Pirates plated three runs in the home half of the inning taking a 3-2 lead. Worrell belted a two-run homer scoring Packard in front of him, while Burleson’s RBI sac fly to left field scored Brickhouse.
Radford’s David Bryant tied the game at three-all with an RBI double to right field in the second pushing across Matheny. From there, it was all ECU. Packard doubled in Brown for the first run before Worrell laced a two-run double of his own. Washer reached on an infield single plating Worrell making it a four-run game at 7-3.
The inning continued with Pirates at second and third for Lloyd, who singled through the right-side scoring Washer. Seth Caddell doubled down the left field line plating two which was followed by Nick Barber’s RBI two-base hit. Packard capped the 10-run frame with a two-run shot to right field making it a 13-3 contest. For the Pirates, it was the most runs they have scored in a frame since plating 11 against N.C. Central (third inning) on March 26, 2016.
Both teams scored a run in the third for a 14-4 contest before Radford scored once in the fifth and sixth and three more in the ninth. ECU would plate its last run of the night in the sixth on Caddell’s homer to left field.
Carter Spivey (1-0) notched the win in his collegiate debut surrendering two runs (both earned) on three hits with one punch out in two innings. Starter Jake Agnos allowed four runs (three earned) on four hits with a pair of walks and four strikeouts in four frames. Stephen Wilmer worked one-third of an inning, while Zach Barnes closed out the contest allowing three runs (all earned) on two hits with four strikeouts in 2.2 frames.
Hunter Williams (0-1) took the loss giving up seven runs (six earned) on six hits in one inning. Andrew Nardi didn’t fare any better as he was touched for six runs (all earned) on six hits in one frame. The trio of Brandon Donovan (3.0 IP, 1 R), Brandon Feathers (2.0 IP, 1 R) and Ryan Bywaters (1.0 IP) worked the final six innings allowing just two runs.
ECU collected 16 hits in the second contest with five players registering multiple base knocks (Barber/2, Caddell/2, Packard/3, Washer/3 and Worrell/2). By reaching base in both games today, Brickhouse extended his on-base streak to 35 games (enter the season at 33 games).
The Pirates will look to complete the series sweep when the two teams meet Sunday, Feb. 17 at 12 noon.