Long ball leads Pirates to another C-USA series win

Published 8:25 pm Tuesday, May 12, 2009

By Staff
ECU has chance at regular-season title
ECU Sports Information
HOUSTON, Texas – Ryan Wood led 10 Pirates with at least one hit with his 4-for-5 performance, which included two home runs, as No. 22 East Carolina (37-15, 14-7) took the rubber match against Houston (24-27, 12-9) Sunday afternoon in Conference USA action at Cougar Field, 13-6.
Home runs by Wood, Stephen Batts and Brandon Henderson highlighted a five-run second inning that pushed ECU’s lead to 7-1. Drew Schieber singled through the left side to start the inning and ended up on third after a Jared Avchen ground out and a wild pitch. Trent Whitehead laced his 18th double pf the season to left center, scoring Schieber, before Wood cleared the bases with his 11th homer of the season. Batts followed with his 12th home run of the year on the next pitch to chase Michael Goodnight from the game. Henderson didn’t take long to welcome Chase Dempsay to the game, as he blasted his ninth home run of the season and the third of the inning for the Pirates to cap the scoring at five runs.
Kevin Brandt (7-1) picked up his seventh win of the season allowing two runs on eight hits in 6 1/3 innings with four strikeouts. Brandt’s scoreless streak came to an end in the fifth inning when Chris Wallace belted a home run to left field, halting the streak at 23 2/3 innings. Brad Mincey went 2 2/3 innings in his seventh start of the season, allowing four runs (one earned) on five hits with a walk and strikeout.
Goodnight (4-4) lasted 1 1/3 innings, allowing six runs (five earned) on eight hits, before Chase Dempsay entered the game in the second inning. Dempsay went 2 2/3 innings, allowing four runs on four hits with four punch outs. Houston used three pitchers to close out the final five innings
ECU jumped out to 2-0 lead in the first inning thanks to four hits. Whitehead reached on an error by Taylor White, then took third when Wood singled through the right side, putting runners on the corners for Batts, who popped up to the shortstop. Kyle Roller drove in his 61st run of the season on a single through the left side that plated Whitehead and moved Wood to second. Wood came around to score on Brandon Henderson’s single through the left side, pushing the lead to 2-0. After Devin Harris flied out to deep left center, Dustin Harrington hit a laser to right field just before Roller.
Wallace hit his eighth home run of the season in the fifth inning, pulling the Cougars to within five, 10-5.
Wood smacked his second home run of the game, a two-run shot to left, in the seventh inning extending ECU’s lead to 12-5. Avchen singled up the middle with one out and came home on Wood’s 12th homer of the season.
Houston added a run in the eighth off the bat of Runte, who hit his second home run of the season to left field, making the score 12-6.
The Pirates will be back in action today when they head to Wilmington to square off against in-state rival UNC Wilmington, with first pitch scheduled for 7 p.m.