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Bailey's Take on Pirate Sports

From the Anchor Desk
Wednesday, May 26, 2004
By Brian Bailey
Sports Anchor of WNCT-TV 9

To the victors go the spoils


One voter for the Conference USA postseason baseball awards said his first ballot was all of three words.

He simply wrote in “East Carolina Pirates.”

He later added in players from other teams, but the way East Carolina dominated the league this season, you can see where that voter was coming from.

The awards start from the top. Randy Mazey was presented the Keith LeClair Award as the C-USA Coach of the Year. His acceptance had to have been an emotional one. Mazey turned in one of the finest coaching jobs in all of East Carolina’s sports history this year.

The Pirates were picked fifth in the preseason poll. That was close, as East Carolina actually finished fourth...

Think again. The Pirates were picked 5th in the preseason C-USA poll, but actually finished fourth in the nation in the final regular season poll by Collegiate Baseball.

Ryan Jones was honored as the league's Player of the Year. Jones has been among the national leaders in slugging percentage all season long. His slugging percentage is an amazing .871. He also led the league in hitting at .409 and in on base percentage at .513. Jones is also a semifinalist for the prestigious Dick Howser Award, given annually to the nation’s top collegiate player.

Greg Bunn was named as C-USA's Pitcher of the Year. Bunn was great as a closer last season, but he took his play to new heights this year, going 8-0 with a 2.91 ERA. Bunn held opposing hitters to a league low .190 batting average this season.

Jones and Bunn are joined on the first-team All C-USA squad by first baseman Ryan Norwood, and second baseman Trevor Lawhorn.

Jamie Paige and Darryl Lawhorn were named to the second team.

If anything, Paige was robbed. If there is a better leadoff hitter in the country, I’d like to meet him.

D-Law may be a bit disappointed with his second team status, but he just didn’t get many pitches to hit. His unselfishness, though, is another reason why this team is ranked as high as fourth in the nation.

Even with all of their success, the Pirates probably still need a win or two in the conference tournament to nail down one of the eight national seeds for the NCAA tournament.

However, the way this club has gone about its business this year, don’t be surprised if the Pirates take home the C-USA tournament title as well!

Cavaliers courting Herenda

East Carolina assistant basketball coach Greg Herenda spent the first part of his week interviewing at the University of Virginia.

Reports indicate that Herenda could be in for a big pay raise if he takes the job in Charlottesville. There is a huge risk factor, though, because Cavaliers' Coach Pete Gillen is feeling considerable heat after several sub-par seasons for the Wahoos.

Sources say that East Carolina may be trying to put together a counter-proposal to keep Bill Herrion’s head recruiter in Greenville.

Herenda is an outstanding personality and has helped to lure several outstanding players to Greenville in his time with Herrion.

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02/23/2007 01:29:22 AM

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