Greenville, N.C. – Taking on top-10 ranked East Carolina, the UCF baseball team split the Friday double header on the road, dropping the first contest, 4-2, but winning the night-cap in dominant fashion, 10-5.
Game One | UCF (17-20, 7-6 AAC) – 2, No. 7 East Carolina (27-5, 9-0 AAC) – 4
The Knights found themselves down early in the first game against No. 7 East Carolina, as the Pirates plated a run in the first inning on a couple of singles. ECU would strike twice in the second, taking advantage of a throwing error and a solo shot by Conor Norby.
After seeing the deficit extend to 4-0, the Knights answered in the seventh with a pair of runs. With runners on the corners, Pablo Ruiz grounded out to drive in Josh Crouch for UCF's first run of the game. The freshman John Montes drove in his 18th RBI on the year to make the game 4-2.
With his second start of the year, Zack Hunsicker fanned four batters in his 5.0 innings of work. In his 13th appearance of the year, freshman Zack Bennett threw the 7th and 8th inning, holding the Pirates scoreless.
Winning Pitcher: Gavin Williamns (5-0)
Losing Pitcher: Zack Hunsicker (0-2)
Top Pitcher: Zack Hunsicker (5.0, 4 K, 4 ER), Zack Bennett (2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 K)
Top Hitters: John Montes (2-3, 1 RBI), Josh Crouch (2-4, 1 R)
- Gephry Pena extended on-base streak to 36 games with a first-inning walk
- Knights fall to 14-38 all-time with the loss in game one
- Josh Crouch continued his hot streak, going 2-4 at the plate and scoring a run
- John Montes put together his sixth multi-hit game of the year
Game Two | UCF (18-20, 8-6 AAC) – 10, East Carolina (27-6, 9-1 AAC) – 5
Carrying the late game momentum from game one, UCF struck first in game two to jump out to the early lead, plating five before East Carolina could answer. Tom Josten opened the account with an RBI single in the first inning; in the second, Pablo Ruiz doubled and later came around to score on a wild pitch; and the Knights plated three in the third as Josh Crouch, Alex Freeland, and Ben McCabe earned RBI.
Ben McCabe took the big step in sealing the victory for the Knights, launching a three-run home run in the seventh inning – his 10th home run on the year.
The Pirates scored in three separate innings, answering UCF's big innings with multiple-run innings themselves, but the Black and Gold's pitching held strong against the potent offense.
Starting pitcher Kenny Serwa tossed 6.1 innings in his 7th start of the year, a season-long for the redshirt junior. Hunter Patteson came out of the pen to earn the long save, working through 2.2 IP of scoreless baseball to close the game.
Winning Pitcher: Kenny Serwa (2-2)
Losing Pitcher: Garrett Saylor (3-1)
Top Pitcher: Kenny Serwa (6.1, 6 K, 5 ER), Hunter Patteson (2.2 IP, 1 BB, 0 ER)
Top Hitters: Ben McCabe (2-4, 5 RBI, 1 HR), Josh Crouch (3-5, 1 RBI, 2 R),
- UCF's win in the second game of the day was ECU's first lost in 10 games conference play.
- The Knights are 3-3 against ranked opposition after splitting the doubleheader
- First win in Greenville since April 15, 2017 when the Knights swept the Pirates
- The 10-run game is the eighth of the year - UCF is 5-2 when scoring 10+ runs.
- Gephry Pena's on-base streak comes to an end at 36 games. The streak dated back to March 6, 2020
- Ben McCabe's 7th inning home run is his first since March 27 at Troy.
The Knights and No. 7 ECU will continue the AAC series on Saturday, Apr. 24 with first pitch set for 11 a.m. before closing the series on Sunday at 1 p.m.
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