ON PIRATE SPORTS
From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
By Brian Bailey
Witter, Bucs set stage for
pivotal final week
archives from the past year's Brian Bailey Show.
When East Carolina celebrated
senior day on Saturday, it was fitting that a senior, Adam Witter, delivered
with a pair of home runs.
Witter, from Chambersburg, PA,
came back on Sunday and duplicated the feat. He hit two more home runs as
the Pirates completed a three-game sweep of Conference USA foe UAB.
It was a sweep that most
certainly keeps the squad’s postseason hopes alive.
“This is the time that you
really want your team playing well,” said Pirate Coach Billy Godwin after
Sunday’s 12-2 win. “We’ve had some weekend series where we didn’t play well
on Sunday, so we really wanted to come out with some energy.
"I thought our guys did a good
job of getting on top early.”
I asked Witter before Sunday's
game if he had two more home runs in him after Saturday’s performance. He
smiled and gave me a look like we might see more fireworks. He said he
wanted to get this one over early so he could hit the golf course for a
The Pirates did make quick
work of the Blazers in the series finale. The game went just seven innings
under the 10-run mercy rule.
Witter probably had time for
27 holes, but the time for diversions will be brief.
“We’ve still got work to do,”
The Pirates head to Coastal
Carolina for a single game this evening before heading west to Memphis for
the final C-USA series of the season on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Four more wins would put the
Pirates at 36 for the season with the C-USA tournament to come. With a win
or two in the C-USA event, the Pirates should punch their 8th straight
ticket to the NCAA Tournament.
I asked Coach Godwin if this
was an NCAA tournament team.
“I think so now,” Godwin said.
“We’re swinging the bats well and playing with a lot of confidence. We just
have to keep winning. We put ourselves in this position and we’ve just got
to keep on winning.”
The Pirates celebrated senior
day on Saturday and then Mother’s Day on Sunday. Both days were big for
On Saturday, Witter and the
rest of the seniors were presented commemorative bats and framed pictures.
Witter’s shot was a pose after a home run earlier this season. It looked
like one of those old pictures of Babe Ruth that you’ve seen. It was a
classic shot. It was a shot that we would see four times during the weekend.
“I’m really seeing the ball
well,” said Witter. “I got some really good pitches to hit and I was able to
put some good swings on them.”
Witter understands that every
game — make that every inning — is critical as a bubble team.
“We know just how important
every inning is,” said Witter. “We can’t afford to go out there and have a
bad stretch. We feel that we need to win them all. This time last week we
had eight games to go. Now, it’s down to four and we need to keep winning.”
The Pirates got great outings
on the mound from Brody Taylor, Shane Matthews and Dustin Sasser this
weekend. Taylor went the distance in his win, while Matthews and Sasser both
went deep into their games to rest the bullpen.
Sasser got into trouble in the
second inning of Sunday’s win. He walked two and hit a batter to load the
bases with nobody out. He then proceeded to strike out the side.
“I was trying to finesse the
ball instead of just throwing it in there,” said Sasser. “I finally made an
adjustment in my delivery and I was able to get it back and have a good
Sasser’s three strikeouts in
that inning deflated the Blazers, turning what could have been a Sunday
shootout into a rout by the Pirates.
“There’s nothing better then
to see our guys hitting the ball like they are right now,” Sasser said.
“They’re doing the best they’ve done all year. It’s nothing but a confidence
boost for a pitcher when you get run support like that.”
Sasser and the pitching staff
hope the hot hitting continues. That 8th straight trip to the NCAA
tournament hangs in the balance.
Send an e-mail message to
Click here to dig into Brian Bailey's Bonesville
02/23/2007 01:33:44 AM