Shockers explode in late innings to beat top-seeded East Carolina

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — The game was close for the first few innings, but an offensive outpouring led the Shockers to a win over the No. 1-seeded East Carolina Pirates on Thursday, 14-4.

Tommy LaPour got the start on the mound for the Shockers and delivered a gutsy 6.2-inning performance that lasted a total of 115 pitches. He allowed seven hits and three runs while striking out three.

Tyler Dobbs took the mound after LaPour exited, and between him, Mason Munz and Hunter Holmes held the Pirates at bay, only allowing two hits and one run.

Offensively, the first five innings were quiet for the Shockers. Jaden Gustafson hit a single in the top of the first to give Wichita State University a 1-0 lead, but the Pirates responded with a two-run home run in the bottom of the first.

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East Carolina tacked on another run to the lead in the fourth inning to give the Pirates a 3-1 lead.

Heading into the sixth inning, though, the Shockers got hot. Kam Durnin hit a single to score one run, Lane Haworth hit a bases-clearing double that scored three and Josh Livingston hit a three-run home run to put the Shockers up 8-3.

The Pirates were held scoreless in the bottom of the sixth, and in the top of the seventh, it was Livingston again who delivered a home run, this one a grand slam to give the Shockers a 12-3 lead.

WSU scored two more in the top of the ninth on a base hit and wild pitch, but by then, the damage was done.

The win moves Wichita State one step closer to the AAC Championship game, a game the Shockers will likely need to win in order to advance to the NCAA Tournament.

Up next, the Shockers will play the winner of East Carolina-Rice on Saturday. First pitch is set for 8 a.m. CST and will stream on ESPN+.

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