Marshall Takes Game Two, 7-1
May 7, 2011
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Nathan Gomez and Thor Meeks each hit home runs and combined to drive in six runs as Marshall (18-25, 5-12) took game two of the Conference USA series 7-1 over East Carolina (29-17, 10-10) Saturday afternoon inside Appalachian Power Park.
Meeks, who was 3-for-4 in the game, staked Marshall to an early 2-0 lead in the second on a two-run home run to right center and the Thundering Herd never looked back. With two outs in the frame, Gray Stafford singled to center and Meeks smacked his second career home run off of Kevin Brandt at Power Park just out of reach of a leaping Trent Whitehead.
Mike Mason evened his record at 3-3 on the season working six innings where he allowed one run (earned) on six this with six walks and six strikeouts. Jesse Fernandez tossed three shutout innings with two strikeouts, a walk and three hits for his first save of the year.
Brandt (5-3) suffered his third-straight loss in league play surrendering four runs (all earned) on eight hits with six punch outs in 5.2 innings. Seth Simmons allowed a run (earned) on one hit in one-third of an inning. Zach Woods (1.1 IP, 3 H, 2 R, ER, K) and Joseph Hughes (0.2 IP, H, K) tossed the final two innings.
In the bottom half of the sixth, Marshall padded its lead on a three-run home run by pinch hitter Nathan Gomez to right center. Victor Gomez drew an opening frame walk and took third on a two-out double to left by Meeks. After Brandt was lifted for Simmons, Nathan Gomez entered the game for Eric Semeniuk and took a full count offering over the wall for his third round tripper of the season.
Marshall would tack on runs in the seventh and eighth to cap the scoring at 7-1.
The Pirates, who took game one of the series in dramatic fashion by erasing a six-run lead in the ninth Friday night, recorded nine hits and left a staggering 15 runners on base in the contest. ECU stranded at least one runner in all nine innings and left the bases loaded in the fourth and ninth frames. Corey Thompson, who extended his hit streak to 11 games with a single in the third, joined Chase McDonald and Wooten with multiple hits
Kenny Socorro led all hitters with four hits and in the first two games of the series is batting an impressive .700 (7-for-10) with three RBI and three runs scored. The Stafford brothers each added two hits and Nathan Gomez was 2-for-2 with four RBI.
Sunday's rubber match is scheduled for 1 p.m. (EDT) and will pit a pair of senior right-handers on the hill. Seth Maness (6-3, 1.93 ERA) will get the nod for the Pirates, while the Thundering Herd will counter with Arik Sikula (2-5, 4.92 ERA).