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From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, May 31, 2011

By Brian Bailey

Bucs get another bite at Charlottesville apple


JUNE 3-6, 2011

1. Virginia (49-9)
2. East Carolina (39-19)
3. St. John's (35-20)
4. Navy (33-23-1


UVa vs. Navy, 1 pm
ECU vs. St. John's, 6 pm
All 16 Regional Brackets


Bucs get another bite at Charlottesville apple
Audio: Godwin Sizes Up Charlottesville Regional
Rankings: ECU Climbs in Baseball America Poll
Field of 64: All 16 NCAA Regional Brackets
Final Conference USA Tournament Scoreboard
Box Score: East Carolina 4, Southern Miss 0
Pirates have run gamut of emotions
Box Score: East Carolina 4, Tulane 2 (11 innings)
Box Score: Houston 8, East Carolina 5
Hosting snub fueled Lady Pirates
Polls: Pirates on the move; 'Cocks vault to #1
Baylor nips Lady Pirates for regional title
Lady Pirates advance to regional final
Lady Pirates pounce on Maryland
Pirates get bill from NCAA for $10 a page

By Brian Bailey
All rights reserved.

The East Carolina baseball team gathered on Memorial Day for lunch and a show.

The show was the NCAA Tournament Selection Show, and the Pirates had their question answered quickly.

The first regional announced was the Charlottesville Regional. Virginia is the top overall seed in the tournament and the top seed at home.

East Carolina will head to Charlottesville as the number two seed. St. John's is No. 3 and Navy is seeded fourth.

“Wherever you go you are going to play good teams,” said Pirate Coach Billy Godwin. “It is certainly an opponent we are familiar with. That is exciting that we know a little bit about them. We’ve also played St. John’s in the past so we know their style.”

Virginia has been ranked number one in the nation for a good portion of the season. The Cavaliers are the Atlantic Coast Conference regular season and tournament champions with a sparkling record of 49-9 on the season.

North Carolina swept Virginia for three of the Cavalier’s losses. The other teams to beat UVA this season were Florida State, Georgia Tech, Boston College, Miami, North Carolina State and ECU.

Virginia took each one of the series against those same teams.

The series with the Pirates came early this season, during the last weekend in February.

In the opener, UVa's Danny Hultzen was brilliant. He struck out a career-best 15 batters in seven dominating innings. He gave up just three hits in the 10-1 romp and at one point retired 19 straight ECU batters.

Game two that weekend featured a contest in which the Pirates made a couple of errors, both physically and mentally, that proved pivotal in a 4-3 loss.

In game three, Pirate pitcher Mike Wright was the star. He allowed just two runs in seven innings of work as the Pirates took a 4-3 victory.

Godwin would say after that weekend in Virginia that he thought his team grew up a bit in the series. The club definitely gained some confidence.

“I think we are playing our best baseball right now,” ECU reliever Brad Mincey said Monday after the team's regional destination was announced. “To go up there and play close with them the first time, and then to get a win, it certainly gives us confidence. We just have to play with confidence.”

The Pirates face off with St. John’s in the opener. ECU defeated the Red Storm 9-7 in the 2009 Keith LeClair Classic.

Coach Godwin said he would meet with his staff before announcing a starter for the opener.

Ace Seth Maness says he would like another shot at the Cavaliers. Maness got the loss in the first game of the February series. Maness gave up 9 runs, but only three of them were earned in 3.1 innings. The Pirates committed five errors.

“I don’t have a preference,” said Maness. “But I would probably rather throw against Virginia. I think it would be a good matchup. ... I would love to prove myself again.”

As the tournament’s overall top seed, Virginia will be a heavy favorite in this Charlottesville Regional.

Godwin, though, likes the way his team comes into the postseason.

“This time of the year it’s not so much about your opponent as it is about us playing well,” said Godwin. “I like the way our guys are playing right now. We look forward to going up there and playing well.”


E-mail Brian Bailey.

Brian Bailey Archives

05/31/2011 04:17 AM


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