May 12, 2006
GREENVILLE, N.C. - Brody Taylor tossed his fourth complete game of the season, while Ryan Tousley, Dale Mollenhauer and Jake Smith each collected three hits to help East Carolina (30-20, 8-11) coast to an 11-6 win over UAB Friday night at Clark-LeClair Stadium.
Taylor, who improved to 7-2 on the year, pitched his third complete game in his last four starts allowing six runs on seven hits and striking out a season-high eight UAB (18-32, 5-14) batters.
Randy Mills suffered his first loss of the season after lasting just one inning and giving up five runs on five hits and walking two. Ben Styes relieved Mills working 4 2/3 innings and allowing three runs on seven hits. Kasey Croft and Jacob Legg closed out the game working a combined 2 1/3 innings.
Six Pirate batters had multiple hits on the night and were led offensively by Tousley who was 3-for-4 from the plate with a home run, a double and three RBI. Smith bolstered his average to .317 with a 3-for-5 performance, which included two doubles and two RBI. Mollenhauer (3-for-5) also collected a pair of doubles and belted his fifth homer of the year in the bottom of the eighth. Ryan Wood (2-for-4), Jay Mattox (2-for-4) and Stephen Batts (2-for-3) were the other Pirates with multiple hits.
Leading the way offensively for the Blazers was designated hitter Philip Bell who went 2-for-3 at the plate with a home run and two RBI. J.R. Bond and Steven Turner each collected a hit and RBI on the night.
ECU wasted little time in getting on the scoreboard putting up three runs in the bottom of the first for a 3-0 lead. Mollenhauer laced a double down the left field line and advanced to third on a fielding error by Turner. Smith singled up the middle plating Mollenhauer, then advanced to second on a wild pitch before Adam Witter walked setting up Wood's RBI single to center. After a Mattox single loaded the bases, ECU scored the final run of the inning when Witter crossed home on Brandon Henderson's fielder's choice.
In the bottom of the second Tousley extended his hit streak to nine games when he smacked his third home run of the season to right-center scoring Batts for a 5-0 Pirate lead.
ECU added to its lead in the bottom of the fourth scoring three runs to make the score 8-0. Tousley added to his RBI total when he doubled down the left field line scoring Henderson. Harrison Eldridge brought home Tousley with a single up the middle and Smith collected his second hit of the day a double to right-center scoring Eldridge.
UAB scored three runs in the top of the sixth to pull within five, 8-3. Jorge Gutierrez and Levi Patmon scored on a fielding error by Pirate second baseman Ryan Wood, before getting their final run of the frame Bond's single to right field that scored Bell.
ECU once again added to its lead in the bottom of the seventh when Batts doubled to center field scoring Henderson, who was hit by a pitch earlier, to make the game 9-3.
Bell answered the Pirates run in the top of the eighth with a two-run shot to left-center scoring Danny Sawyer to close the gap to four, 9-5.
ECU would plate two more runs in the eighth when Mollenhauer hammered a Legg fast ball over the right field fence, a solo shot. Wood knocked in his second run of the night when he doubled in Pirate pinch-runner Jamie Ray from second to put the game at 11 to 5.
UAB would score one more run in the top of the ninth to close the game at 11-6.
The Pirates and Blazers will play game two of the three-game series Saturday after noon starting at 2 p.m. Prior to the first pitch, there will be a special ceremony for the late Dr. Henry VanSant in the jungle at 1:30 p.m. followed by a special presentation to the 2006 senior class at 1:40 p.m.