Penny Pitches Pirates Past Appalachian, 9-0
From ECU Sports Information
GREENVILLE -- Davey Penny scattered three hits over seven shutout innings and East Carolina pounded out 14 hits as the Pirates blanked Appalachian State, 9-0, on Saturday at Harrington Field.
The shutout victory is the second of the season for ECU, which improves to 9-4-1. Appalachian State saw its modest two-game win streak halted and falls to 2-8.
Darryl Lawhorn drove in three runs and hit his fourth home run of the season and Ryan Jones went 2-for-3 with three RBI to pace the Pirates at the plate.
Penny improved his record to 2-2 by turning in his second straight seven-inning shutout performance in as many starts. The senior right-hander struck out seven and issued only one walk. Freshman Jason Neitz pitched the final two innings without allowing a base runner to complete the combined shutout.
Following a trend that has developed this season, the Pirates did not get their bats going until midway of the game.
ECU grabbed an early 1-0 lead in the first inning when Jamie Paige led off with a double, then scored when Lawhorn's fly to center field was dropped by ASU's Ty Racette.
The Pirates made it 2-0 in the fourth when Brian Cavanaugh got on board with a two-out single and then scored on Jones' hard double to right field.
However, it was not until the fifth inning that East Carolina grabbed a firm command of the game, plating three runs on four hits, including Lawhorn's two-run homer. Cavanaugh also drove in a run with a double to extend the lead to 5-0.
ECU added an additional run in the sixth and blew it open with a three-run seventh.
ASU's Nick Peterson (1-3) absorbed the loss, allowing five runs (four earned) on nine hits over five innings.
The two teams meet again on Sunday at 1 p.m.
Penny has now thrown 14 consecutive scoreless innings to lower his season ERA to 2.66, tops among the Pirates' regular starters.
Left fielder Jamie Paige and shortstop Luke Cherry each extended their team-best hitting streaks to eight games today. Both have identical .341 season batting averages to tie for the current team lead.
The crowd of 1,783 in attendance at today's game is the second-largest of the season for the Pirates, who are now averaging 1,600 per game.