DURHAM — Jay Beshears hit a grand slam for Duke in an 8-run fifth inning and the Blue Devils downed No. 9 East Carolina, 9-0, on Tuesday at Durham Bulls Athletic Park.
Duke (6-2) went ahead, 1-0, in the fourth with two out on a solo homer to right by Andrew Fischer off of Danny Beal (1-1).
The hosts started their half of the fifth with a bunt single by Giovanni DiGiacomo. Alex Mooney singled to center field. Luke Storm walked to load the bases before Garrett Saylor came in for Beal.
Beshears connected with a 1-0 pitch for a 5-0 Duke lead. Four walks and a wild pitch extended the advantage to 7-0 before DiGiacomo had a 2-run single up the middle.
Erik Ritchie and Jordan Little had mound stints in the fifth before Merritt Beeker came in. Justin Wilcoxen threw out DiGiacomo stealing before a fly out ended the inning.
ECU was limited to three hits — a single by Cam Clonch in the seventh, a single by Jacob Starling in the eighth and a leadoff double by Cam Murphy in the ninth.
Alex Gow (1-0) started and went four innings for the Blue Devils.
The Pirates slipped to 5-2 with both losses on Tuesday, including a 6-5 setback in 10 innings a week earlier at Campbell.
The outcome reduced ECU’s lead in the series with Duke to 42-14-1. The Pirates have won 22 of the last 24 meetings. Duke is not scheduled to play in Greenville this season.
ECU hosts the Keith LeClair Classic this weekend. Games scheduled for Friday include Long Beach State and Georgetown at noon, followed by the Pirates vs. Indiana at 4:30 p.m.