Chants sink Pirates 9-1 behind Nick Parker’s dominant performance
The senior had a career-high 10 strikeouts over a career-long 8.0 innings
GREENVILLE, N.C. – Behind the right arm of senior pitcher Nick Parker and four home runs, the Coastal Carolina baseball team defeated the No. 8-nationally ranked East Carolina Pirates 9-1 in the first NCAA Greenville Regional Championship game on Sunday night in Greenville, N.C.
The two teams will play a winner-take-all game tomorrow at 1 p.m. ET.
The win was the second of the day for the Chanticleers who have now won three consecutive elimination games and snapped the Pirates’ winning streak at 20-consecutive games.
Parker (6-3) had a career day to earn the win, as the fourth-year Chant struck out a career-high 10 batters over a career-long 8.0-complete innings. He allowed three hits, walked two, and hit one batter while throwing a career-high 126 pitches.
After earning the win in game one of the day over Virginia with 2.0-scoreless frames, Reece Maniscalco pitched the ninth inning in the nightcap, allowing a solo home run and striking out two in 1.0-complete inning.
The losing pitcher was ECU spot starter Jake Kuchmaner (4-3), as the lefty did not get out of the first inning. He gave up three runs on three hits and one walk while facing just six CCU hitters.
The Pirates used seven pitchers in the game who combined to walk seven Coastal Carolina hitters.
For Coastal offensively, four different Chants homered in the win in Tyler Johnson (2-for-4, HR, BB, 2 RBIs, 2 runs), Christopher Rowan, Jr. (2-for-3, HR, 2B, SAC, RBI, run), Nick Lucky (2-for-5, HR, 3 RBIs, run), and Matt McDermott (1-for-4, HR, RBI, run).
The Pirates’ offense was held to just four base hits for the game as outfielder Bryson Worrell (1-for-4, HR, RBI, run) hit a home run in the ninth inning to spoil the Chants’ shutout attempt, while Jacob Starling (1-for-2, 2B, HBP) reached base twice with a double and was hit by a pitch.
Coastal carried over the momentum from the game one ninth-inning walk-off win into the nightcap, as Johnson and Rowan, Jr. hit back-to-back opposite-field home runs into the ECU jungle beyond the outfield wall to put the Chanticleers on top 3-0 after one inning of play.
Johnson’s was a two-run shot to left-center field, his 18th home run of the season, while Rowan, Jr.’s was of the solo variety and his eighth of the season.
In the bottom of the third inning, Coastal used the long ball again, as a lead-off walk, a single up the middle, and a sacrifice bunt, put two runners in scoring position for Lucky who hit a moon shot over the wall in right-center field to double the Chants’ lead at 6-0 after three innings of play.
After East Carolina head coach Cliff Godwin found himself in a sticky situation and was ejected in the top of the sixth inning for arguing balls and strikes, Parker sent the Pirates down in order 1-2-3 before McDermott hit a solo home run in the bottom half of the inning to extend the lead to 7-0 heading into the seventh inning.
Parker carried his strong outing over into the top of the seventh inning, as he pitched around a two-out double and struck out two more ECU batters to keep the Purple and Gold off the scoreboard at the seventh-inning stretch.
The Chanticleers added a run in the seventh on a Rowan, Jr. lead-off double, a wild pitch, and an East Carolina fielding error, and another run in the bottom of the eighth on an RBI-double from Zack Beach to push the lead out to 9-0.
ECU’s Worrell led off the ninth with a solo home run down the right-field line to break up the shutout and put the final score at 9-1.
The NCAA Greenville Regional Championship game will be tomorrow, Monday, June 6, at 1 p.m. ET at Clark-LeClair Stadium in Greenville, N.C.
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