ECU Snaps Losing Streak with 10-2 Home Victory Over UNC-Wilmington
East Carolina snapped a seven game losing streak with a convincing 10-2 win over UNC-Wilmington Tuesday night in Clark-LeClair Stadium.
Kirk Morgan picked up the win for ECU to move to 1-0 on the season while Chris Joyner took the loss for Wilmington to fall to 1-1 on the year.
Luke Bolka went 2 for 3 with a home run, Wes Phillips went 2-2 and Eric Tyler went 2 for 5 at the plate to lead the Pirate batters. Nobody for Wilmington had more than one hit in the contest.
“He’s a senior and he’s a great competitor. He doesn’t have the best stuff on the mound, but he locates three pitches and he’s a great competitor and a great teammate and he always wants the ball,” said Cliff Godwin after the game.
“This was as complete of a game as we’ve played in a long time. I think back to Campbell about the fourth game of the season when everything was kind of clicking on all cylinders. I thought Kirk Morgan set the tone with his start. Bolka’s three-run homer in the first inning, Bryce Harman got a two-out RBI later,” Godwin said, “But we just kept adding on with two big number innings with a five spot and a four spot to allow our pitching to pitch with a little less stress.”
The seven game losing streak has been a tough pill to swallow for Godwin and the Pirates. They’re happy that the streak is over and he spoke to the job his players have tried to do all season.
“We’ve needed something good to happen and I’ve been saying for a few games that people outside of the organization don’t know what our kids do every day,” said Godwin, “The kids have come ready to play every day. It’s just been tough, it’s been hard. There’s no other way to explain it. They do things the right way and if you do then you’re going to have success. The wins and the losses will take care of themself if you continue to do that.”
It was a big win for Kirk Morgan and he talked about the outing after the game.
“We’ve had a tough couple of games but we had a great team meeting yesterday and we treated today like opening day,” Morgan said, “So we went 1-0 today and Thursday we’re going to come out and go 1-0 again. It’s awesome to get this feeling back and get back in the win column.”
“I’m just trying to throw strikes and let my guys work behind me. It’s fun pitching definitely but it’s even more fun to win. If I throw strikes, we’ll be successful as a team. It’s definitely important getting ahead 0-1. I don’t know how many guys I got ahead of tonight, but I just tried to pound the zone. It’s fun. The offense was awesome, getting four runs in that first inning. I was just able to exhale and just go out there and have fun.”
The Pirates got off to a fast start when Charlie Yorgen scored after a fielding error from Wilmington’s Kennard McDowell allowed Turner Brown to get on base. Then Luke Bolka’s three-run homer to left field gave East Carolina a quick 4-0 lead.
In the fourth inning, Charlie Yorgen reached on a fielder’s choice that scored another run to make it 5-0 Pirates.
Robbie Thornburn got Wilmington on the scoreboard when his single to right field allowed Riley Zayicek to score.
But in the bottom of the fifth, ECU scored five more runs on three Pirate singles from Bryce Harman, Charlie Yorgen and Travis Watkins along and a double from Eric Tyler that stretched the score to 10-1.
Wilmington(13-18/2-4 CAA) picked up another run in the top of the ninth when Riley Zayicek singled to allow Blake Deatherage to score.