Sophomore hurler T.J. Hose
Feb. 10, 2006
GREENVILLE, N.C.-- Jake Smith and Adam Witter each homered while T.J. Hose struck out eight in six innings of work as East Carolina won its season-opener, 6-1, over Maryland Friday afternoon at Clark-LeClair Stadium.
The Pirates (1-0) scored one in the first and one in the second to go up 2-0 before Maryland (0-1) bounced back, cutting the lead to 2-1 in the fourth. ECU responded with three runs in the fifth, highlighted by a two-run Smith homer, and a final run in the seventh on Witter's solo shot to close the scoring.
Redshirt freshman Stephen Batts, who started his first collegiate game in left, led the Pirates on the day going 3-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored. Witter, Smith and newcomer Jake Dean all finished with two hits on the day.
Hose worked six innings to pick up his first win before newcomer Josh Dowdy came on the start the top of the seventh. Before exiting, Hose struck out eight and walked just one, allowing one run on five hits in his first outing as a sophomore. Dowdy made his first appearance on the mound for the Pirates, throwing two shutout innings before Rhodes came on to pitch the ninth, allowing one hit while striking out two.
Six players collected a hit for the Terps with Chad Durakis picking up an RBI with Dan Melvin scoring the only Maryland run.
ECU escaped an early scare when Maryland lead-off man Steve Braun drove a deep shot to left in the top of the first but Batts, playing in his first collegiate game, jumped over the fence to rob Braun of the lead-off homer.
The Pirates got on the board in the bottom of the first to take a 1-0 lead. After a Smith single and a Witter walk, Dean hit a two-out bloop single to center, scoring Smith from second, giving Dean his first career RBI.
Batts started another Pirate rally in the bottom of the second with a double to left-center to lead off the inning. He moved over to third on a Chris Buss groundout before Dale Mollenhauer brought him home with another two-out single to center, pushing the ECU lead to 2-0.
In the top of the fourth, Durakis doubled to right-center just out of the reach of a diving Harrison Eldridge, scoring Melvin from second for the Terps only run of the game.
Maryland tried to mount a comeback in the top of the fifth when Jason Von Behren singled and Joe Palumbo reached on a throwing error on Buss. With runners on second and third and no outs, Hose proceeded to strike out three straight batters to get out of the jam, securing the Pirates' one-run lead.
Eldridge reached base on a hit-by-pitch in the bottom of the fifth before Smith hit a check-swing opposite field home run just over the wall in right, increasing the Pirate lead to 4-1. Witter then followed with a double deep down the line in right and then moved to third on a Dean groundout. Batts then collected his third hit of the game and first career RBI with a single up the middle, scoring Witter from third.
Witter then pushed the lead to 6-1 in the seventh with his solo shot just to the left of the scoreboard in right-center.
The Pirates and the Terps will play the second game of the weekend series Saturday, Feb. 11 at 2 p.m. at Clark-LeClair Stadium.