GREENVILLE — Travis Watkins hit a grand slam in a six-run fourth inning as East Carolina took a 15-8 American Athletic Conference win over Tulane on Friday night.
Bryant Packard and Turner Brown had back-to-back RBI doubles for the Pirates in the bottom of the first, putting ECU ahead to stay at 2-1.
The Pirates added four runs with two out in the second. Drew Henrickson and Bryce Harman had singles before Charlie Yorgen walked to loaded the bases. A single to left by Eric Tyler scored two runs. Packard and Brown followed with RBI singles for a 6-1 lead.
Dusty Baker led off the fourth with a hit and stole second. Tyler walked before Packard had an RBI single. A walk to Brown loaded the bases and Dwanya Williams-Sutton drew a walk to force Tyler home.
Watkins drove his grand slam over the right field fence for a 12-3 lead.
Packard had a sacrifice fly in the fifth. Watkins and Henrickson had singles in the sixth before Watkins scored on a ground out by Harman.
Watkins walked in the seventh and scored on a string of wild pitches.
Watkins went 2-for-4 with four RBIs and three runs. Packard was 3-for-4 with a double, four RBIs and two runs.
Brown had two hits and two RBIs. Henrickson was 2-for-5 as ECU led 14-13 in hits.
Grant Brown and Jake Willsey hit home runs for Tulane (21-22, 8-5 AAC).
Senior left-hander Evan Kruczynski (2-2) started and went five and two-thirds innings for the Pirates (23-20, 3-10). He allowed eight hits and seven runs, all earned, while walking three and striking out three.
Ryan Ross pitched two-thirds of an inning before Davis Kirkpatrick went the last two and two-thirds. Kirkpatrick held the visitors scoreless while yielding three hits with one walk and two whiffs.
Corey Merrill (6-3) absorbed the loss.
ECU’s first home win in league play this season put the Pirates in position to take the series in a 4 p.m. start today.