GREENVILLE — Pepperdine scored eight runs in the ninth inning to secure a 12-2 win over host East Carolina in the first day of the 15th annual Keith LeClair Classic on Friday.
The Waves (4-4) scored twice in the third inning and never trailed.
Jake Washer had three hits and both RBIs for No. 18 ECU (7-2). Washer had an RBI double to bring in Spencer Brickhouse in the sixth and cut Pepperdine’s lead to 3-1.
Washer had an RBI single in the eighth that scored Brickhouse to cut the deficit to 4-2.
“We didn’t come ready to play today,” said Pirates coach Cliff Godwin. “The guys looked at the score from the Campbell-Pepperdine game (15-2 Campbell win) and thought we could just roll the balls out there and win. The best team doesn’t always win. It’s the team that plays the best that wins and Pepperdine played way better than we did.”
Mike Malinchak and Aahron Modlin each had three hits for the visitors.
Will Jenson (2-0) got the win as he yielded one run (unearned) on five hits with three strikeouts in six innings. ECU starter Trey Benton (2-1) also went six innings. He allowed four runs (three earned) on eight hits with four strikeouts and no walks.
Alec Burleson, Austin Covers, Matt Bridges, Zach Barnes, Cole Beavin and Willy Strong all saw mound duty for the Pirates.
Connor Litton and Bryant Packard each had two hits for ECU. Brickhouse and Jeremy Whitehead had one hit apiece in the Pirates’ first loss this season at Clark-LeClair Stadium.
ECU plays No. 28 Missouri State (4-3) in the LeClair Classic today at 4:30 p.m, St. Joseph’s beat the Bears 6-3 on Friday.
The Hawks (2-3) and Pepperdine meet at noon today.