64 teams entered the regional competition just a week ago, and now just 16 remain. Winning a regional is not easy as defending national champion Virginia and Ole Miss both lost the regionals they were hosting. Coming out of the regional in Virginia was #3 seed Eastern Carolina, who heads to Lubbock for a best of 3 series with a trip to Omaha and the College World Series on the line.
The Pirates from Greenville, North Carolina play in the American Athletic Conference (AAC) against teams like Houston, Memphis, and Tulane, who won the regular season championship with a record of 15-7. The Pirates went 15-8-1, just slightly behind Tulane. ECU would lose to Memphis and USF in their conference tournament, but received an at-large bid and a #3 seed in Charlottesville, VA. During the season they took 2 of 3 at Virginia, improving their stock greatly early in the season. They also took 2 of 3 over Houston at home in Greenville, a team the Red Raiders faced early in the season during the classic in Houston. They currently have a record of 37-21-1, in their 28th trip to the NCAA tournament.
Players to Watch For
Pitchers Jacob Wolfe and Jimmy Boyd both earned AAC pitcher of the week twice this past season. Wolfe is a potential Game 3 starter, and has a 2.66 ERA with a 6-3 record. Boyd could start Game 2 and is 7-5 with a 2.90 ERA. Tonight’s probable starter is Evan Kruczynski, who has a 7-1 record and a 1.86 ERA. Evan made the Charlottesville All-Regional team, along with catcher Travis Watkins, second baseman Charlie Yorgen, third baseman Eric Tyler, and outfielder Garrett Brooks. Watkins leads the team in hits, runs, doubles, RBI’s, and walks.
Game 1 - Friday 7:00pm - ESPNU
Davis Martin (9-0, 2.31 ERA) vs Evan Kruczynski (7-1, 1.86 ERA)
Game 2 - Saturday 2:00pm - ESPNU
Stephen Gingery (4-2, 3.38 ERA) vs Jimmy Boyd (7-5, 2.90 ERA)
Game 3 - Sunday 2:00pm ESPNU/ESPN2
Ryan Moseley (6-4, 5.44 ERA) vs Jacob Wolfe (6-3, 2.66 ERA)
All games will be broadcast on ESPNU, and game 3 has a chance to get picked up by ESPN2. Wreck Em Tech, the #RoadToOmaha goes through Lubbock!!!