GREENVILLE — East Carolina took both ends of a doubleheader with visiting Cincinnati on Saturday to complete a four-game sweep of its opening American Athletic Conference series.
The Pirates got a grand slam from Ryley Johnson in a 7-run fifth inning of the first game, a 13-3 win that concluded after seven innings in accordance with the 10-run rule.
C.J. Mayhue (2-1) was credited with the win in relief of Jake Kuchmaner in the first game and got his fifth save in the second game, a 2-0 win.
ECU pitchers had a streak of 14 scoreless innings to close the doubleheader on Saturday at Clark-LeClair Stadium. Cam Colmore (3-0) got the win in the second game with six strikeouts in three innings after Tyler Smith started and went four innings.
Mayhue came in for the last two frames and struck out five in retiring all six batters he faced.
Cincinnati took a 3-0 lead in the second inning of the first game. ECU answered with a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning as Zach Agnos had an RBI single and a run came in on a double play.
The Pirates went ahead 6-3 with four runs in the fourth. Josh Moylan tied the score with an RBI triple. Ben Newton’s sacrifice fly brought in Moylan and Connor Norby had a 2-run double.
A bases-loaded walk to Newton started ECU’s scoring in the fifth. Ryder Giles was hit by a pitch to force home a run before Johnson hit his first career homer for a 12-3 lead. A sacrifice fly by Seth Caddell completed the scoring.
“Our pitching did a really good job all weekend, especially guys out of the bullpen,” said Pirates coach Cliff Godwin. “Smitty (Tyler Smith) was good the last game and Cam came in and struck out the side with runners at first and second, no outs, which it was nothing-nothing.
“We were able to score two that next inning. That was a big momentum swing.”
Norby and Caddell had run-scoring singles in the fifth inning of Saturday’s second game.
ECU improved to 22-5 overall and 4-0 in the AAC while Cincinnati slipped to 11-14, 0-4.
The Pirates host Memphis (11-15, 1-3) for a four-game series that will start with the first game of a doubleheader on Friday at 1 p.m.