Early Deficit Dooms Baseball in 6-3 at East Carolina

TULANEGREENWAVE.COM Junior Garrett Cannizaro Posted a Pair of Hits in Sunday's Loss at East Carolina
Junior Garrett Cannizaro Posted a Pair of Hits in Sunday's Loss at East Carolina

April 29, 2012

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GREENVILLE, N.C. - Five early runs carried East Carolina past the Tulane baseball team in the series finale on Sunday (April 29) inside Clark-LeClair Stadium, as the Pirates handed the Green Wave a 6-3 defeat. Tulane won the first two games of the season and posted a 3-1 record on the week, but couldn't complete the sweep as the ECU pitching staff fanned 13 batters in the loss.

"They pitcher came out and set a tone in the first inning," said Tulane associate head coach Chad Sutter, "and they got the game started with a chopper, which was a tough break, and Mapes just left one pitch up (in the zone) and we weren't able to rally from the early deficit. When you get behind early against a good pitcher, it is tough to come back. I thought that we battled from there and strung some at-bats together in the middle innings, but it just wasn't enough today."

East Carolina (28-16-1, 10-7-1 C-USA) struck for three runs in the first inning and a pair of runs in the second inning versus Green Wave starting pitcher Tyler Mapes. A three-run home run from Zach Wright opened the scoring with two outs in the first inning, before a wild pitch and an RBI single from Drew Reynolds pushed the ECU lead to 5-0.

Mapes threw just one and two-thirds innings and allowed five runs - four earned - on five hits. The junior didn't walk a batter, threw one wild pitch and struck out one. Alex Massey came on in relief and retired the final batter of the second inning to hold the home team's lead at five runs.

In the third inning, Tulane (29-15, 7-8 C-USA) got a pair of runs back against ECU right-hander Jharel Cotton when Brennan Middleton led off the inning with a walk and came around to score on a double down the left field line off the bat of Bowen Woodson. After a strikeout - one of Cotton's 12 in the game - Garrett Cannizaro moved his hitting streak to a season-best 13 games with an RBI single to left field.



With the gap sitting at 5-2 in favor of the Pirates, Massey would allow just one run over five and one-thirds innings of relief work. The freshman surrendered four hits and only allowed a two-out RBI single to Chase McDonald in the fifth inning. Massey walked one and coaxed ten fly ball outs and six groundouts.

After McDonald's RBI single in the fifth inning moved the gap to four runs at 6-2, but Brandon Boudreaux homered in the eighth inning to cut the lead back to three runs. The junior's sixth home run of the season came against ECU reliever Jeff Hoffman, who came on to start the inning.

Cotton was a big part that the Green Wave offense was unable to get anything rolling, going seven innings and striking out 12 batters.

Tulane was unable to get a base runner in the ninth inning versus ECU's third pitcher of the game and dropped the series finale, 6-3. The Olive and Blue was able to get the series win, their third Conference USA series road victory, but couldn't finish off the sweep on the road.

Cannizaro posted a two-for-four day at the plate, while Middleton's walk moved his reached base streak to 21 games with the third inning walk. Jeremy Schaffer had a pair of hits in the series finale, while Sean Potkay saw his 22-game reached base streak come to an end on Sunday.

Tulane will continue their stretch run with a road contest at LSU on Tuesday, May 1 with the first pitch scheduled for 6:30. The Green Wave will then head home for a three-game series with Southern Miss starting on Friday, May 4 at 6:30 and continuing on Saturday (May 5) at 2:00 and Sunday (May 6) at 1:00 on the Turf at Turchin.

- Tulane leads the all-time series, 23-14.
- Tulane posted their third 2-1 weekend on the road in Conference USA play.
- Garrett Cannizaro pushed his hitting streak to a season-long 13 games with a two-for-four effort on Sunday.
- Brennan Middleton's reached base streak moved to 21 games with a third inning walk on Sunday.
- Brandon Boudreaux's ninth inning home run pushed his reached base streak to 18 games.
- It was the sixth home run of the season for Boudreaux, with five of those coming on the road in C-USA play.
- Massey made his ninth appearance of the season on Sunday at East Carolina.
- Sean Potkay had his 22-game reached base streak come to an end on Sunday.