Tar Heels stil have Pirates’ number
By By KEVIN TRAVIS, Sports Editor
GREENVILLE — The No. 5 North Carolina Tar Heels blasted three home runs and seven pitchers combined to strike out 17 batters in a 5-1 victory over the East Carolina Pirates.
There were 5,076 fans in attendance at Wednesday’s game at Clark-LeClair Stadium, the second most in stadium history. The largest was 5,523 fans, set March 3 when the Pirates played N.C. State.
The Pirates actually out-hit the Heels, 8-7, but the 17 strikeouts were brutal.
Tim Federowicz, Reid Fronk and Chad Flack all homered for the Tar Heels (39-10), who have now won seven straight against the Pirates (32-17) and own a 38-24 series lead. ECU’s last win against UNC came April 17, 2002.
The Heels, which took a 10-0 win over the Pirates earlier this season, took a 2-0 lead in the first off ECU starter Jeff Ostrander (2-1), who made just his second start of the season. After Dustin Ackley bounced a single up the middle, Federowicz absolutely crushed a shot into left, his fourth homer of the year.
Flack led off the second with his fifth homer of the year, a shot into left that gave the Heels a 3-0 lead.
The Pirates pulled within 3-1 in the fourth. Ryan Tousley led off with a double and he scored on Jake Dean’s one-out single into right.
UNC answered in the top of the fifth. Fronk’s seventh homer of the year, coming after a single by Kyle Seager, gave the Heels a 5-1 advantage.
That third homer ended the day for Ostrander. The senior lefty allowed the five runs on five hits in 4 2/3 innings, striking out two and walking three.
Bailey Daniels kept the Pirates in it, throwing 3 1/3 innings of solid relief. He allowed just one hit and struck out two.
Shane Mathews pitched the ninth for ECU, striking out one and allowing one hit.
The Tar Heels threw a slew of pitchers at the Pirates. They combined to strand 10 ECU runners.
UNC starter Matt Danford (4-0) made his first start of the year. He allowed a run on two hits, struck out five and walked two in 3 1/3 innings in getting the win.
After Rob Catapano faced one batter, Federowicz came on and dominated the Pirates. He went 2 1/3 innings and scattered three hits while walking one. The first six outs he recorded were by strikeout.
Matt Cox, Rob Wooten, Andrew Carignan and Alex White also saw time on the hill for the Heels. White, a former standout at nearby D.H. Conley High School, pitched the ninth. The freshman struck out two of the three batters he faced.
ECU’s Stephen Batts singled in the eighth to extend his hitting streak to 15 games.
The Pirates will play host to UCF in a three-game C-USA series starting Friday. Game times are set for 7 p.m. Friday, 6 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday
ECU will play their final regular season home game Tuesday against Elon before closing C-USA play May 17-19 at UAB.
The C-USA Tournament will be May 23-27 at Clark-LeClair Stadium.