HOUSTON — East Carolina remained winless in the American Athletic Conference with a 17-3 loss at Houston on Friday night.
The Pirates scored twice in the top of the second to lead 2-0 after a leadoff double by T.J. Riles. A fly to left by Luke Bolka allowed Riles to move to third before Bryant Packard walked. Bryce Harman doubled down the left field line to score Riles and put Packard at third. Packard scored an unearned run on a throwing error on a ball hit to third by Eric Tyler.
ECU starter Chris Holba pitched a hitless, scoreless first inning but was forced to leave the game when he was struck in the face in the second inning by a line drive from leadoff batter Jake Schneider. The game unraveled from there for the Pirates (18-13, 0-4 AAC), who pulled left-handed reliever Jake Agnos as the Cougars (21-8, 2-2) began to pile up runs as the inning progressed.
After Joe Ingle took over for Agnos, Joe Davis capped off Houston’s second inning explosion with a three-run homer. Only one of UH’s seven runs in the frame was earned.
Connor Wong hit a three-run homer as the Cougars scored four times in the third to lead 11-2.
Riles homered to right center for the Pirates in the fifth, cutting the Houston lead to 11-3.
Connor Hollis had a solo homer for the Cougars in the fifth.
Lael Lockhart scored on a ground out by Wong as Houston extended its led to 14-3 in the sixth.
A three-run triple by Rey Fuentes closed the scoring in the seventh.
Davis and Jared Triolo each had three hits for Houston, which outhit the Pirates, 13-7. Riles and Harman had two hits apiece for ECU.
The second game of the series is at 7:30 tonight.