Bristow’s gem helps Pirates shine

Published 9:59 am Monday, March 3, 2008

By By KEVIN TRAVIS, Sports Editor
GREENVILLE — Justin Bristow seemed to get stronger inning by inning. The junior, who transferred to East Carolina from Auburn, fired a complete-game, two-hitter in leading the Pirates to a 6-0 victory over Monmouth.
Bristow’s first win as a Pirate helped ECU (3-4) to its second straight nod over the Hawks (1-2), coming in front of 3,010 fans on a warm, sunny Sunday at Clark-LeClair Stadium.
The 6-4, 213-pound right-hander, who struck out six and walked one, retired the final 18 batters he faced.
ECU coach Billy Godwin was pleased with his team’s overall performance.
Drew Schieber and Jamie Ray had RBI-singles in the first inning off Monmouth losing pitcher Matt Marc-Aurele (0-1), who gave up four runs on six hits in three innings, to set the early tone. Harrison Eldridge, who joined Ryan Wood, Stephen Batts and Brandon Henderson in banging out two hits, said it was important for the Pirates to respond with consecutive wins.
Eldridge led off the bottom of the first with a ground-rule double. Two outs later, Kyle Roller was hit by a pitch. Schieber slapped an RBI-single to center to score one run, while Ray followed with a run-scoring single into right for a 2-0 lead.
Wood slapped an RBI-single and Batts beat out an infield hit to score another run in the second, giving the Pirates a 4-0 advantage.
ECU made it 5-0 in the fifth when Broc Sutton reached on a two-base error, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on a sac fly from Ray.
The Pirates closed the scoring off Matt Frazier (two runs, one earned, four hits in three innings) in the sixth. Wood and Batts had consecutive one-out singles before a Roller sac fly scored Wood for the 6-0 advantage.
That was more than enough for Bristow, who did a little bargaining with ECU coaches in the late innings.
The Pirates return to action Tuesday at Old Dominion for a 5 p.m. game. The Pirates will then play Wednesday at Virginia Commonwealth at 3 p.m. before returning home this weekend to host the fifth annual Keith LeClair Classic.
Whitehead’s day
Former Washington Pam Pack star Trent Whitehead, who made his first college start for the Pirates on Saturday, entered the game Sunday as a defensive replacement in the seventh inning.
The freshman left fielder, who went 0-1 with a ground out to first base in the seventh, made his first putout as a Pirate on Sunday. Monmouth catcher Bobby Dombrowski flew out to Whitehead to lead off the eighth.
Whitehead made his second putout in the ninth when he caught Tim McEndy’s fly ball to left to lead off the ninth.
The freshman outfielder used two hands on that attempt.
Monmouth 000 000 000 – 0 2 2
East Carolina 220 011 00x – 6 10 0
WP: Justin Bristow (1-0); LP: Matt Marc-Aurele (0-1)
Hitters: M – Bobby Dombrowski 1-3 (2B), Andy Meyers 1-3; ECU – Harrison Eldridge 2-3 (3 steals), Brandon Henderson 2-3, Stephen Batts 2-4 (RBI), Ryan Wood 2-5 (RBI), Drew Schieber 1-2 (RBI), Jamie Ray 1-3 (2 RBI).