While trailing 5-3 with one out and bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth inning, ECU needed one big play to pull out a win against the Old Dominion Monarchs. The Pirates couldn’t get it done in Clark-LeClair Stadium as both Luke Lowery and Bryan Bass failed to reach a base on fly balls to record ECU’s final outs.
When all was said and done, ODU escaped with a 5-3 victory.
The Monarchs (9-5) scored the first two runs of the game, taking a 2-0 lead by the end of the fifth inning. Connor Myers hit a solo home run in the third for the game’s first point, followed by a RBI single by Austin McGowan.
In the seventh inning ODU hit another solo home run, this time by Jordan Negrini. The Monarchs scored two more runs in the seventh to take a 5-0 lead before the Pirates began to show signs of life.
After Nick Thompson, Drew Reynolds and Jay Cannon all reached base in the bottom of the seventh, Dylan Brown stepped to the plate with bases loaded. Brown hit a two-run double to cut ODU’s lead to 5-2 before Philip Clark hit an RBI single that scored Cannon to pull the Pirates within two, 5-3, of the lead. There the score stayed as ECU was unable to capitalize late in the game.
Thompson led the Pirate offense going 3-for-3 at the plate with a run scored. Brown recorded the only other multi-hit performance, going two of three with the two RBIs.
Nick Durazo (0-1) was credited with the loss for ECU in his first collegiate start. Durazo gave up two runs on six hits and struck out three in six innings of work. The Pirates used four pitchers in the final three innings, all of whom gave up at least one hit and none facing more than five batters.
ECU (9-6) has a quick turn around as they travel to play the Campbell Camels on Wednesday for the Pirates first road game of the year. Campbell (13-2) beat ECU, 6-4, earlier this season in Clark-LeClair Stadium.
Campbell is off to its best start through fifteen games in its division one history, including an impressive 11-1 record at home. The Camels are led by shortstop Brent Graham (.444 batting average, 13 RBIs and nine stolen bases) and infielder Elijah Trail (.389 average, 19 RBIs and three home runs) on offense.
The Camels have three players (Graham, Ben McQuown and Jesse Simmons) batting over .400 with a minimum of 25 at bats. To combat such a stong offensive lineup, ECU will most likely start Andy Smithmyer (1-1) on the mound.
Wednesday’s game against Campbell is set to start at 6 p.m.