Pirates staying close to home

Published 7:11 pm Monday, May 28, 2012

GREENVILLE —  The East Carolina baseball team will make its 26th NCAA Regional appearance and 12th in the last 14 years after earning a No. 2 seed at the Chapel Hill Regional in this year’s NCAA Baseball Championships, which will be held at Boshamer Stadium.
The Pirates (35-22-1) will square of against No. 3 St. John’s (37-21) in the first round of the regional on Friday, June 1 at 1 p.m. (ET), while No. 6 national seed North Carolina (44-14) will face No. 4 Cornell (31-15-1) at 6 p.m.
In recent years the Pirates have faced two of the three clubs in the Chapel Hill Regional, most recently the Tar Heels where they dropped a midweek extra-inning affair at UNC 1-0 in 2012. The two clubs have met 74 times with the Tar Heels leading the all-time series 49-25.
ECU’s opening round matchup with the Red Storm will be the eighth between the two schools (ECU leads 4-3) and third in NCAA post-season play. The two teams met twice in the 2011 Charlottesville Regional with ECU dropping the first game 2-0 on day one of the regional before eliminating St. John’s 6-4 to advance to the regional against the No. 1 overall national seed Virginia Cavaliers.
Winner’s of the Ivy League crown, Cornell received an automatic bid the NCAA Regionals and could face the Pirates in a potential second round matchup depending on the outcome of Friday’s games. The last time ECU squared off against Cornell was back in 1969 when the Pirates claimed a weekend series, two games to one.
Of the 64 teams that were announced Monday, the Pirates own a 13-9 overall record in 2012 against 10 institutions: Louisville (1-0), North Carolina (0-1), N.C. State (1-1),
Oral Roberts (1-0), Purdue (0-1), Rice (1-2), Stony Brook (3-0), UAB (4-0), UCF (1-3) and UNC Wilmington (1-1).
Joining the Tar Heels as national seeds in the 64-team field are (in order): Florida (42-18), UCLA (42-14), Florida State (43-15), Baylor (44-14), Oregon (42-17), UNC, LSU (43-16) and South Carolina (40-17).
Each of the 16 regionals features four teams, playing a double-elimination format. The regionals are scheduled to be conducted from Friday, June 1, to Monday, June 4 (if necessary). Selection of the eight super regional hosts will be announced on www.NCAA.com/cws, Monday, June 4 at approximately 11 p.m. (EDT).
The 65th Men’s College World Series begins play Saturday, June 15, at TD Ameritrade Stadium in downtown Omaha, Nebraska.

Friday, June
Game 1: (3) St. John’s vs. (2) East Carolina (1 p.m.)
Game 2: (4) Cornell vs. (1) North Carolina (6 p.m.)
Saturday, June 2
Game 3: 1 p.m.
Game 4: 6 p.m.
Sunday, June 3
Game 5: 1 p.m.
Game 6: 6 p.m.
Monday, June 4
Game 7: 6 p.m. – IF NECESSARY