Pirates travel to Georgia Southern, pick up 6-4 win in series opener

ECU Pirates

Matt Bridges (ECU Sports Information photo)

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STATESBORO, Ga. – A four-run fourth inning proved to be enough as No. 22 East Carolina took game one of the three-game series against Georgia Southern, 6-4, Friday night at J.I. Clements Stadium. With the win the Pirates improve to 5-0 on the year, while the Eagles fall to 1-4.

Trailing 2-1 in the fourth, ECU scratched across four runs on three hits to take a 5-2 and held on for its fifth-straight victory to open the 2021 season. Josh Moylan’s RBI single scored Connor Norby knotting the game at two-all. With Zach Agnos on third and Moylan standing at first, Ryder Giles’ fielder’s choice sac bunt scored Agnos. Bryson Worrell followed with an RBI ground out to short scoring Moylan and Lane Hoover reached on a fielding error by pitcher Tyler Owens allowing Giles to cross home.

CLICK HERE for the boxscore and more from Friday’s game

Matt Bridges (1-0) earned the win in relief working 2.1 innings allowing one run (earned) on two hits with a pair of walks and three strikeouts. Cam Colmore earned the save working a scoreless ninth where he struck out the side and issued two walks. Starter Tyler Smith gave up three runs (all earned) on three hits with five walks in four-plus innings. ECU also got pitching performances from Giles (0.1 IP, 1 K), A.J. Wilson (0.2 IP, 1 H, 1 K), Trystan Kimmel (0.0 IP, 1 H), Garrett Saylor (0.0 IP, 1 BB), and Danny Beal (0.2 IP, 1 BB, 1 K).

Jordan Jackson (0-2) suffered the loss allowing five runs (four earned) on seven hits with a pair of strikeouts in three-plus innings. Owens worked four innings out of the pen where he fanned five and surrendered two hits. Nick Jones closed out the game tossing the final two frames allowing one run (earned) on three hits with four punch outs.

ECU struck first plating a run in the third inning for a 1-0 advantage. With one out, the Pirates loaded the bases with singles from Alec Makarewicz, Worrell and Hoover. Seth Caddell drove in his fourth run of the season with a sac fly to center pushing across Makarewicz.

Mason McWhorter’s two-run home run in the home half of the third gave Georgia Southern a 2-1 lead. Jaylen Paden reached on a fielder’s choice before coming around to score on McWhorter’s third home run of the season.

The Eagles scored a run in the fifth on Noah Ledford’s RBI sac fly and another in the seventh when Christian Avant reached on a fielder’s choice making it a 5-4 ball game. But the Pirates got a much needed insurance run from Bridges, who singled up the middle with two outs scoring Giles from second base for his first collegiate hit.EC

ECU tallied double-digit hits for the third consecutive game with its 12 on the night. Hoover paced the offense going 3-for-5, while Moylan recorded his second career multi-hit game with a pair of hits. In all, nine different Pirates collected a hit on the day. The pitching staff fanned a season-high 14 batters in the game marking the third-straight with double-digit punch outs and the fourth in their five games.

The Pirates will be back in action on Saturday, Feb. 27 for game two of the weekend series against the Eagles. First pitch is slated for 2 p.m. (EST) and will be aired on ESPN+.

Post-Game Notes:
ECU improved 153-40 (5-0 in 2021) when scoring first under head coach Cliff Godwin …
For the first time in 2021, the Pirates had to come from behind for a win after trailing 2-1 through three frames …
Bryson Worrell extend his on-base streak to 13-straight games with a single in the third inning …
Lane Hoover pushed his hit and on-base streak to 12 consecutive games with a single to center in the third …
Connor Norby extended his hit streak to 12-straight games with his single in the fourth …
ECU’s pitching staff struck out a season-high 14 batters marking the third consecutive game with double-digit punch outs and fourth time in five games …

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