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Bailey's Take on Pirate Sports


From the Anchor Desk
Friday, April 18, 2003
By Brian Bailey
Sports Anchor of WNCT-TV 9

Loss can't spoil hot dogs in the 'Jungle'


East Carolina gave up eight runs to start the game with North Carolina on Wednesday night.

The way the Pirates are hitting this season that was eight runs too many.

Still, this team seems to always dig itself, and then come clawing back. Jake Smith led the comeback with a pair of home runs. The Pirates were able to cut the lead in half, but that was as close as they got before the innings ran out.

“When you play a team that is more talented than you, you just have to play sharp,” said Pirate Coach Randy Mazey after the loss. “You can’t have any lapses in hitting, pitching or defense.”

Smith was certainly the bright spot on offense for ECU and it caught the attention of the Pirate coach.

“A smarter coach probably would have started him,” said Mazey. “Five or our hits came off the bench today. The guys off the bench gave us a lot of energy tonight.”

Mazey did try to get a little more offense in the lineup against Carolina. Ryan Jones was back after an eight-game absence. Jones had been suffering with back pain. He still might not be at 100 percent, but Mazey said he was well enough to play and his bat would certainly help the offensive attack.

The atmosphere at Harrington Field was especially electric on Wednesday night. The jungle was packed early on, looking more like a football Saturday of tailgaters then like a baseball crowd 

That’s the beauty of the jungle, and why so many fought to keep it when the new stadium is built. I had a chance to anchor my sportscast from the jungle Wednesday night, and can say first hand that the ‘dogs and ribs were mighty tasty!

Some Pirate football players turn into waiters for the day

Vonta Leach took one look at the cameras and knew he was in trouble.

“Come on, man, this is for the team,” Leach joked. “You guys aren’t supposed to be here.”

Leach was obviously embarrassed in his apron. The scene was the Todd Dining Hall on Wednesday afternoon.

To the victor go the spoils. In this case, to the Purple went a dining experience they may never forget.

The Purple team won the spring football game on Saturday. So the Gold squad had to serve the winners with their Wednesday night dinner.

Coach John Thompson was on hand. He was obviously pleased with the attitudes of both squads. The competition this spring was very good. Good teams get better with competition.

Paul Troth wore his apron with a smile. In fact, Troth and Leach were actually stealing some French fries off of Marvin Towne’s plate, before serving him with a smile.

Damane Duckette was demanding more fried chicken from Brian Rimpf. You have to think that these two can put away some groceries. Like a good sport, Rimpf hustled back to the kitchen, delivering Duckette’s request in a split second.

Overall, I would rate the entire spring experience as a big time success.

The fun is back for Pirate football. This won’t be an easy season coming up, but there is a great deal of excitement within the program.

Let’s just hope Troth delivers the pigskin as accurately as he did those dinners on Wednesday night.

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02/23/2007 01:25:10 AM


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