Senior Brandon Henderson
June 6, 2009
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - Alex White struck out a career-high 12 batters for his first win in six weeks as No. 4 national seed North Carolina (46-16) beat East Carolina (46-19) 10-1 in the NCAA super regional opener Saturday afternoon in front of a record crowd of 4,316 at Boshamer Stadium.
White, who picked up his sixth career NCAA victory to become the UNC's all-time winningest post-season pitcher, allowed one run on nine hits in 8 1/3 innings with three walks tom improve to 8-4 on the season.
Seth Maness (9-3) dropped this third consecutive decision of the season and fourth consecutive post-season start dating back to 2008. He surrendered seven runs (six earned) on 13 hits in five-plus innings. Patrick Somers went 2 2/3 innings allowing three runs on four hits with a punch out and Britton Cole recorded the final out in the eighth.
ECU took an early 1-0 lead in the second on Brandon Henderson's 13th home run of the season an 34th of his career on a 1-0 count to start the frame.
North Carolina went ahead in the third with a pair of runs, then blew the game open with seven more in the sixth to take a 1-0 lead in the super regional.
Trailing by one the Tar Heels used consecutive one-out hits to knot the game at one. Mike Cavasinni doubled down the right field line and came around to score on Seth Baldwin's single to left field. Kyle Seager registered the first of his four hits lacing a single to left, putting UNC up 2-1.
In the sixth, UNC blew the game wide open pushing across seven runs on seven hits to take a 9-1 lead. Garrett Gore capped four consecutive base knocks with his two-RBI single to right field. Mark Fleury's RBI single and Levi Michael's two-RBI single down the right field line helped extend the lead to eight.
Seager finished off the Pirates in the eighth with a solo shot to right, his fifth of the season.
The instate rivals will play game two of the three game series Sunday afternoon with a 12:05 p.m. (EDT) first pitch scheduled on ESPN.