ECU completes doubleheader sweep, 13-3 (8 Innings) - WNCN: News, Weather

ECU completes doubleheader sweep, 13-3 (8 Innings)

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Ian Townsend sparked an eight-run second inning by belting a pair of home runs, which tied and NCAA record, as East Carolina (10-10, 3-3) completed the Conference USA doubleheader sweep over Tulane (10-8, 3-3) with a 13-3 win in eight innings Saturday afternoon at Lewis Field inside Clark-LeClair Stadium.

Following game one where the Reid Love and Ryan Williams starred on the mound, it was the offense that shined in game two. The Pirates scored a season-high 13 runs, tied a season-high with 14 hits and belted five home runs – four of those coming in the second inning.

Trailing 3-0 in the second frame, ECU plated a season-best eight runs taking an 8-3 lead and never looked back. Townsend and Bryce Harman hit back-to-back solo homers to right field pulling the Pirates within one, 3-2. With two outs and runners on the corners, Ben Fultz lifted a first pitch offering from J.P France for a three-run homer to right field. Drew Reynolds followed with a walk and Zach Houchins singled through the left side before Townsend blasted his second round-tripper of the stanza.

Williams (6-1) picked up his second win of the day tossing seven innings of shutout relief scattering seven hits and striking out two. In game one of the doubleheader, the right-hander punched out all four batters he face in another relief victory. Starter Brett Mabry lasted just one inning surrendering two three runs (two earned) on six hits.

France (1-2) was saddled with the loss allowing six runs (all earned) on four hits in 1.2 innings. The Green Wave used three pitchers out of the pen in Alex Massey (1.0 IP), Brady Wilson (3.2 IP) and Tyler Zamjahn (1.0) who gave up a combined seven runs (five earned) on 10 hits.

Tulane jumped out to a 3-0 lead scoring a pair of runs on consecutive RBI base hits from Garrett Deschamp and Hunter Hope in the first and a RBI fielder's choice by Richard Carthon in the second.

ECU tacked on a pair of runs in the third extending its lead to 10-3.  Tyler scored the first run on a wild pitch before Reynolds drove in Hunter Allen with an RBI single.

Harman smacked his second homer of the day and third on the week leading off the seventh with a solo shot to right field putting the Pirates up 11-3.

In the eighth frame, ECU sent five hitters to the plate with four recording base hits including Houchins' RBI double and Townsend's RBI single that ended the contest early invoking Conference USA's 10-run rule in the third game of a weekend series.

All-toll, ECU had five players with multiple hits and were led by Townsend's 4-for-5 effort that consisted of two runs scored and five RBI. Harman, Houchins, Reynolds and Charlie Yorgen each added two hits.

The Pirates will be back in action on Wednesday, Mar. 19 when they play host to Virginia Commonwealth at 6 p.m. (ET).

Game One Recap

Ian Townsend collected a team-high three hits and drove in two runs, while Reid Love and Ryan Williams combined for eight strikeouts leading East Carolina (9-10, 2-3) to a 5-2 win over Tulane (10-7, 3-2) in game one of an afternoon twin-bill at Lewis Field inside Clark-LeClair Stadium Saturday afternoon.

Williams (5-1) picked up the win in relief striking out all four batters he faced after entering the game in the seventh inning with runners second and third. Love allowed two runs (all earned) on four hits in 7.2 innings of work while adding four punch-outs.

The Pirates erupted for three runs in the eighth inning breaking a two-all tie thanks to four hits and a Green Wave error. Townsend singled home Reynolds, who walked to start the stanza. Andrew LaMura, who made his collegiate debut as the designated hitter, reached on an RBI infield single that scored Townsend. ECU's final run of the game came on Eric Tyler's single to left field pushing across Jonathan Holt, who pinch ran for LaMura.

Emerson Gibbs (1-2) suffered the loss after giving up three runs (all earned) on four hits in one inning of work. Starter Randy LeBlanc matched Love pitch-for-pitch through six innings and ended up with the no decision. The right-hander surrendered two runs (both earned) on five hits with five strikeouts in seven innings.

Love was masterful in his start facing one over the minimum through six frames. He retired the first nine batters in order before allowing the leadoff batter in the fourth to reach. Love retired the side in order in five of the first six innings and 23 of 25 batters before serving up a solo home run in the seventh.

With the game scoreless heading to the bottom of the sixth, ECU finally broke through plating a pair of runs for a 2-0 advantage. Bryce Harman stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and one out delivering a sac fly to left field that scored Hunter Allen. Townsend followed with a single up the middle plating Ben Fultz before LuMura grounded out to short to end the stanza.

Tulane chipped away at the lead scoring a run in the seventh and eighth innings knotting the contest at two-all. Andrew Garner broke up Love's no-hit bid in the seventh sending a fly ball over the right field wall with one out cutting the lead to one, 2-1.

Richard Carthon's RBI single that platted Bowen Woodson pulled the Green Wave even in the eighth inning. Woodson singled up the middle with one out, took second on Stephen Alemais' base knock through the left side before sprinting home on Carthon's base hit to left field.

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