baseball Edit

ECU Brooms Memphis To Move Into First Place in the AAC

Bryant Packard and East Carolina pick up an AAC sweep in Memphis with a pair of Saturday victories at FedEx Park.
Bryant Packard and East Carolina pick up an AAC sweep in Memphis with a pair of Saturday victories at FedEx Park. (PirateIllustrated.com photo)

(11)East Carolina picked up an AAC weekend sweep of Memphis to move into first place in the conference after winning game three of the series 4-2 Saturday evening in FedEx Park.

ECU’s 30-9 record is tied for the sixth-best start in program history following the 1990 (34-5), 1986 (33-6), 2004 (33-6), 1989 (32-7) and 1999 (31-9) seasons.

Bryant Packard had three hits and scored a pair of runs in the Pirate victory.

Right-handed starter Tyler Smith(6-1) gave up just two hits and a pair of runs with three strikeouts in his five innings of work for ECU(30-9/8-4 AAC) to get the win for the Pirates.

Gavin Williams,Jake Agnos and Zach Barnes, who got his first save of the year, all saw action in relief.

Memphis(13-28/1-11 AAC) left-hander Danny Denz(1-3) lasted just two innings giving up a pair of earned runs, three overall on four hits with one strikeout before Hunter Smith, Blake Bennett and Taylor Bobo did their part from the Tiger bullpen. Smith went the longest at four innings.

“I thought we had awesome pitching, played great defense and got clutch hitting today to get a pair of wins," Cliff Godwin said, " I thought we played more like ourselves in game two today where guys really came out and were ready to play. We put up four runs early and then they brought in their best reliever and we couldn’t scratch any runs across."

"But, all our pitchers in game two (Tyler Smith, Gavin Williams, Jake Agnos and Zach Barnes) were all really good out on the mound today. Anytime you go on the road and get a series win is awesome and obviously sweeping a series on the road is very hard to do.”

Connor Litton grounded out into a double play in the first inning but it was enough to get Bryant Packard home from third base and give the Pirates an early 1-0 lead.

After Dwanya Williams-Sutton doubled to left and advanced to third on a passed ball, a Drew Henrickson grounder brought Sutton across home plate and the ECU lead grew to 2-0.

The Pirates got aggressive offensively in the third when Bryant Packard kept his hitting streak alive at 17 games with a solo homer to left. Then Dwanya Williams-Sutton doubled down the left field line and Spencer Brickhouse scored to give ECU a 4-0 lead.

A Cale Hennemann base hit in the sixth produced a pair of runs for Memphis that trimmed the ECU lead in half at 4-2 but that is as close as the Tigers would come.

The Tigers did have two runners aboard in the bottom of the ninth, but ECU was able to put out the fire on a pop fly and a ground out to end the contest.

GAME TWO

ECU’s four-run fifth inning did the trick in a 4-2 victory over Memphis in the first game of the AAC Saturday afternoon double-header at FedEx Park.

Alec Burleson got his first weekend start and had his best career outing, going four and a third on the mound for ECU giving up a pair of runs on five hits with four strikeouts before Davis Kirkpatrick came on in relief.

Kirkpatrick picked up his second victory of the season to move to 2-0. Ryan Ross came on late to throw for two and a third innings to pick up his fifth save of the year.

The Tigers got off to a quick 2-0 start on an ECU throwing error from short stop Turner Brown that allowed Colton Neel to scamper home and an RBI base hit from Cale Hennemann.

In the fifth inning, ECU scored four runs on RBI’s from Bryant Packard and Spencer Brickhouse to go along with a run scored on a walk with the bases loaded. ECU then scored another run on a wild pitch that brought Brady Lloyd across home plate to make it 4-2.

Jonathan Bowlan absorbed the game one loss for Memphis to fall to 1-6 for the year.