GREENVILLE — East Carolina sophomore right-hander Chris Holba struck out nine in seven innings as the Pirates took their fifth straight win, 7-2, over Elon at Clark-LeClair Stadium on Wednesday.
Holba (2-0) allowed seven hits and two runs, both of which were earned. He yielded one walk.
Elon (3-6) struck early as leadoff batter Zach Evers doubled on a full-count pitch to open the game. He scored as Joe Satterfield followed with an RBI double. The Phoenix went up 2-0 on a sacrifice fly by Kyle Jackson.
T.J. Riles and Charlie Yorgen had singles to start ECU in the third. A sacrifice bunt by Turner Brown moved the runners to second and third. A throwing error allowed Riles to come home and Luke Bolka’s sacrifice fly brought in Yorgen to tie the score.
ECU went abead to stay with three runs in the fourth. Spencer Brickhouse led off with a single and Wesley Phillips’ bunt moved him to second. A single by Tyler Edwards put runners at first and third. A sacrifice bunt by Riles brought in Brickhouse with the go-ahead run.
Yorgen’s double to right center scored Edwards for a 4-2 Pirates lead.
Brown’s single up the middle plated Yorgen as ECU went ahead, 5-2.
Travis Watkins tripled in the fifth and scored on a wild pitch.
Bryant Packard singled to start the Pirates’ half of the eighth and Dusty Baker ran for him. A ground out by Yorgen put Baker at second for an RBI single by Brown.
Matt Bridges pitched the last two innings for the Pirates, allowing one hit and striking out three.
A crowd of 2,841 saw ECU outhit the visitors 13-8 and play errorless defense.
Watkins was 3-for-4. Getting two hits each were Yorgen, Brown, Brickhouse and Packard.
The Pirates open play in the Keith LeClair Classic on Friday at 4:30 p.m. against Western Carolina, the late coach’s alma mater.
ECU plays St. John’s on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. and meets Appalachian State on Sunday at 3:30 p.m.