ECU held a 1-0 lead through seven innings, but UConn got two runs in the eighth and the Pirates were able to tie the game in the ninth and send it into extra innings. Then a Zac Susi base hit in the top of the tenth scored the go ahead run and the Huskies held on in the bottom of the tenth for a 3-2 game two victory.
Ryan Radue (1-2) picked up the win for Connecticut and John Russell got his ninth save of the year for the Huskies.
Joe Ingle fell to 3-2 on the year with the loss for East Carolina. The Pirates used four pitchers in the game including starter Trey Benton who put together a quality outing taking the game into seven plus innings before coming out of the game.
“He was very good, he gave us a chance to win. It’s just little things here and there for all of us. It’s not just Trey but you walk a guy and he’s trying to bunt. We don’t back up a base that inning. The guy advances, a guy gets a hit, we don’t execute the bunt sometime and we don’t get runners in from third base with less than outs,” said ECU head coach Cliff Godwin, “When you’re playing a very good team with a very good pitching staff, you know you going to have to cash in on some of those opportunities when it’s a one run game.”
“We didn’t do enough to win. We’ve gotten them a couple of times like this. They played better, they want to beat East Carolina like most teams do and they made more plays and made more pitches and had better at-bats than we did.”
Godwin talked about the Pirates’ inability to score enough with runners in scoring position.
“We just didn’t do enough. Montgomery is very good. We did a better job of cutting down on our strikeouts but we had the bases loaded with one out and didn’t score which was huge,” Godwin said, “We tried to execute a bunt and didn’t do it and had a base running mistake, so it’s a game of inches. They played better and they deserved to win.”
In the fourth inning, Eric Tyler’s single brought Turner Brown across for the first run of the game.
The Huskies picked two runs in the eighth when Susi flied out to centerfield but Anthony Prato advanced to third on a throwing error and Keith Kruger scored. Then Tyler Gnesda’s single to left brought Prato across to give the UConn the lead.
Brady Lloyd scored for ECU in the ninth inning on a wild pitch from senior right-hander Ryan Radue to tie the game at 2-2.
Susi’s single to left field allowed Prato to score again in the tenth and that proved to be the winning run.
Connecticut picks up their second straight 3-2 win in as many nights to move to 15-9 while East Carolina falls to 18-10 with the loss.