GREENVILLE, N.C. – Eric Tyler hit a pair of runs and drove in a single-game school-record eight runs, while Jimmy Boyd tossed seven scoreless innings as No. 19 East Carolina shutout Jacksonville 13-0 Saturday afternoon at Lewis Field inside Clark-LeClair Stadium. With the win the Pirates improve to 16-8 on the season, while the Dolphins dropped to 15-8.
Boyd (3-1) picked up the win scattering five hits (all singles) in his third quality start of the season. The right-hander induced seven ground ball and nine fly ball outs to go with a pair of walks and three strikeouts. Chris Holba tossed a scoreless eighth inning giving up one hit, while Denny Brady persevered the shutout with a perfect ninth frame.
Spencer Stockton (3-1) suffered his first loss of the season allowing five runs (all earned) on six hits with a pair of walks and one strikeout in four innings. The Dolphins used six pitchers in relief going with Casey Kulina (0.1 IP, 2 Rs), Kyle Arjona (0.1 IP, 1 R), Jeff Tanner (1.1 IP, 1 H), Mike Schappell (1.0 IP, 1 H), Ryan Quintero (0.0 IP, 3 Rs) and Shane Wise (1.0 IP, 2 Rs).
ECU pounded out double-digit hits for the 14th time this year recording 13 in the contest. Watkins led the way with a 3-for-4 performance and scored a career-high three runs, while Tyler and Dwanya Williams-Sutton each added two. Tyler hit a pair of home runs including a grand slam on his way to a new single-game record eight RBI. Garrett Brooks belted his first home run of the season, a two-run shot, and drove in three runs. In all, nine Pirates had at least one hit while 10 scored at least one run.
The Dolphins recorded just six hits in the game getting a pair from JJ Gould and Dakota Julylia.
How It Happened:
ECU jumped out to an early 3-0 lead behind Tyler’s three-run homer in the first inning and really never looked back. With two outs, Watkins singled up the middle and Zack Mozingo drew a walk before Tyler deposited a 1-1 offering from Stockton over the left centerfield wall for his third home run of the season.
Brooks pushed the Pirates lead to five, 5-0, on his two-run shot to right field in the fourth inning. Williams-Sutton doubled with one out and stole third before he was picked off during Brown’s at-bat. Brown followed with a single up the middle and came around on Brooks’ homer to right field.
The Pirates added three runs in the fifth extending their lead to 8-0. Charlie Yorgen walked to start the frame and took third on Watkins’ single to left center. Two batters later Tyler drove in his fourth run of the day with a sac fly to left field plating Yorgen. Bryce Harman reached on a fielding error by Seth DeWitt at first that allowed Watkins to score. Williams-Sutton (walk) and Brown (hit by pitch) loaded the bases for Brooks, who drew walk pushing across Harman for the final run of the stanza.
Tyler’s first career grand slam in the eighth highlighted a five-run frame that saw the Pirates push the lead to 13-0. Kirk Morgan led off with a single to right field and moved to third on Ryan Littlefield’s pinch hit single to right center. A Quintero wild pitch allowed Morgan to score while Littlefield took second. Watkins walked reaching base for the fourth time in the game putting runners on first and second with no outs. The Dolphins went to the pen for Wise, who issued a walk to Jeff Nelson and loading the bases for Tyler’s bases clearing shot down the left field line to cap the scoring on the day.
ECU had six two-out RBI in the contest pushing its season total to 55 … The Pirates recorded their first multi-HR game of the season (three jacks) … Tyler set new personal single-game career-highs for home runs (two) and RBI (eight) – the latter a new single-game school record, which was seven and previously held by Jim Riley (vs. Fairfield/Mar. 8, 1987) and Darryl Lawhorn (vs. New York Tech/Feb. 23, 2002) … Brooks tied his career-high with three RBI … Watkins collected three hits including his team-leading 10th double of the year … He also set a new career-high with three runs scored … The shutout was the second on the season for the Pirates (other vs. George Mason/6-0 on Mar. 9) … Morgan extended his hit streak to eight games with a base knock in the eighth … Harman recorded an extra base hit in his third-straight game with a double in the first inning (had a homer Thursday and two doubles Friday) … ECU improved to 11-3 when reaching double-digit hits in a game … The Pirates belted five home runs in the three-game series and have 12 on the year.
ECU will be back in action on Tuesday, Mar. 29 when they play host to in-state rival UNC Wilmington. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. (ET).