GREENVILLE — East Carolina scored eight runs in the sixth inning to clinch its American Athletic Conference series against visiting South Florida with an 11-3 win on Saturday.
The Pirates (33-18, 16-4 AAC) will seek to sweep the 3-game series with the Bulls (26-24, 6-14) on Sunday at 12:30 p.m. ECU won Friday’s opener, 7-2.
Saturday’s score was tied at 3 when Ben Newton was hit by a pitch to start the bottom of the sixth. Alec Makarewicz doubled down the right field line to put runners at second and third.
Jacob Starling singled to load the bases. ECU went ahead to stay when a balk allowed Newton to score. Joey Berini had a 2-run single.
Lane Hoover and Jacob Jenkins-Cowart had run-scoring singles for an 8-3 lead. Bryson Worrell had a 2-run single and Newton had an RBI single to give the Pirates an 11-3 advantage.
Worrell had a 2-run homer in the third after USF had taken a 3-0 lead in the first. ECU tied the score at 3 in the fourth on a sacrifice fly by Berini.
Carter Spivey (6-0) got the win with three scoreless innings of relief. Spivey yielded one hit and walked one while striking out two.
Worrell had two hits, scored twice and had four RBIs. Berini finished with one hit, one run and three RBIs. Newton had three hits and an RBI. Hoover and Makarewicz each had two hits.
The Pirates outhit the Bulls, 13-7.
ECU’s victory padded its AAC lead to three games over second place Houston (34-17, 13-7), which lost to third place Central Florida (29-21, 12-8) Saturday evening.
The Pirates close the regular season with a three-game home series against the Cougars starting Thursday after hosting Campbell on Tuesday in a non-league contest.