Take on Pirate Sports
From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, February 26, 2002
By Brian Bailey
Sports Anchor of WNCT-TV 9
Miss, DePaul Pulling for Pirates to Lose
Tourney Bound, Almost…
East Carolina took a
huge step towards a trip to Cincinnati and the Conference USA tournament
this weekend, beating Houston at Williams Arena.
As I have written
before, this will be the only year that the goal for this team is a 12th
place finish in the league. You have to take small steps before you take big
There were those who
didn’t expect East Carolina to win a game in Conference USA. The Pirates,
though, have wins over Louisville, Southern Miss, St. Louis and Houston on
the Williams Arena floor. That’s a 4-3 record at home in the team’s first
year at this level.
The Pirate win over
Houston puts this team in the driver’ seat for a slot in the Conference USA
tournament. East Carolina hosts Marquette on Tuesday night, and then closes
out the season at Texas Christian this weekend.
The Pirates have a
two game lead over DePaul for the 12th spot. The Blue Demons host
Saint Louis and Marquette to finish the season. The Demons will be big
underdogs in the Marquette game.
Southern Miss also
needs to win a pair, and must count on the Pirates losing two games. The
Golden Eagles travel to UAB and then finish their season with a home game
against South Florida.
Bill Herrion warns,
though, that this team is not tournament bound just yet.
“Were not in the
conference tournament yet, so we just want to keep on winning,” Herrion said
after Saturday’s win over Houston.
“I think we took a step closer tonight to going to Cincinnati in March,
which I think is going to be a great, great accomplishment for these kids.”
TCU is just 4-10 in
the league, and the trip to Cincinnati could come down to that final game
between East Carolina and the Horned Frogs.
The fact that the
Pirates are in the mix for a berth is somewhat of a a turnabout. After all,
Herrion didn’t know if his team could compete in Conference USA before the
Now he knows!
It is a most
challenging assignment, but Coach Herrion continues to show that he is the
man to get the job done.
Harrington and 'Jungle' Kind to Pirates
three game sweep over New York Tech, plus the Pirate’s rally over Virginia
Commonwealth, moved the team up in the national rankings in basketball.
The Pirates were 23rd
this week in the Collegiate Baseball Poll. ECU was also 26th in
the Collegiate Baseball Poll
This past weekend
featured a couple of record-setting performances.
First, on Friday
afternoon, Clayton McCullough became the first player in school history to
go 5-5 with five extra base hits.
The Pirate senior
catcher hit two home runs and three doubles in five plate appearances. One
of the home runs was a grand slam. In all, McCullough had six RBI on his
biggest day ever at the plate.
Then, on Saturday,
freshman first baseman Darryl Lawhorn tied a school record with seven RBI.
Lawhorn had a two-run double in the second inning, a three run blast in the
fourth inning, and a two run single in the sixth.
The Pirates have won
15 straight games at Harrington Field, and 41 of their last 44 at home.
Can somebody please
say, “Save the Jungle!”
already has. Pirate Assistant Coach Kevin McMullan was my guest on my radio
show on Monday night. Coach McMullan says the administration has talked
about ways to keep the rowdy Pirate faithful going behind the outfield
“I don’t know all of
the specifics, but I think the administration is looking at it,” said Coach
McMullan. “I know that all of the coaches that have come through this year
were very complimentary of the fan support that we have at East Carolina.”
The crowds continue
to be impressive for baseball. And you have to think that the warmer it gets
outside, the bigger the crowds will become.
A very good Central
Florida program comes to town this weekend for a three-game set.
The Golden Knights
will face a Pirate team with some gaudy stats this weekend. East Carolina
has outscored the opposition 67-25 in the sevens wins to date. The Pirates
are hitting a robust .369.
The pitching staff
is doing its part as well. The Pirate staff has a 2.81 ERA with 59
strikeouts and just 13 walks.
So, it's another
weekend of opportunities at home for this ranked Pirate team before it
ventures on the road for the first time next week at VCU.
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