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From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, March 18, 2008

By Brian Bailey

Even dozen for Diamond Pirates

By Brian Bailey
All rights reserved.


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Bailey: Even dozen for Diamond Pirates
O'Brien: NCAA brackets instructive for ECU
BVL Box Score: ECU 9,  Rhode Island 4
BVL Box Score: ECU 7,  Rhode Island 2
BVL Box Score: ECU 13,  Rhode Island 2
BVL: C-USA Basketball Tournament Wrap-Up
Bradsher: Streaks weave their own fate
BVL Box Score: East Carolina 12, Quinnipiac 9
BVL: Tourney over for Pirates
O'Brien: Holland facing difficult task

Billy Godwin’s version of March Madness is winning baseball games all month.

East Carolina made it 12 wins in a row this weekend with a series sweep over Rhode Island. The last Pirate loss was on Feb. 29 in the first game of the Monmouth series. Since then, this club has been rolling.

Now East Carolina gets set for perhaps the biggest week of the season to date. First, it’s the rematch with Elon today, and then the Pirates open Conference USA playing host to the Houston Cougars on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

“Being successful breeds confidence,” said Godwin after Sunday’s win over the Rams at Clark-LeClair Stadium. “Right now we’re pretty confident. Every day we’re going to put ourselves in a position to win.”

Pirate senior Harrison Eldridge agrees.

“We have a lot of confidence,” said Eldridge. “A different person is going to get it done everyday. We’re not counting on one guy. Hopefully, we can continue this streak with Elon and then into the Conference USA part of the season.”

The Pirates host an Elon team that beat them back on Feb. 27, 9-6. Elon took two out of three from the Citadel this weekend to run its record to 17-2 on the season.

Godwin knows that his team really wants to avenge the earlier loss to the Phoenix.

“Elon’s a good club,” said Godwin. “They’re still playing well. It’s good to have them back to face another good club here in our stadium. We really also have to concentrate on getting ready for league play with Houston coming in this weekend.”

Godwin’s Pirates started the year at 1-4. ECU lost two out of three to then 2nd-ranked South Carolina. The Pirates then lost a road game at Elon and dropped that first game of the Monmouth series.

Asked about the winning streak, Godwin was quick to think back to that 1-4 start.

“You have to be humble," he said. "You have to remember back to the 1-4. That will keep you humble. We can’t get complacent. The season is not eve a third of the way over. We just have to keep racking up wins and go from there.”

ECU hoops suspense

March Madness for ECU acting head basketball coach Mack McCarthy takes on a whole different meaning.

ECU Director of Athletics Terry Holland has said in published reports that he wasn’t in a hurry to make a decision on the future of Pirate basketball.

Holland was criticized by some for the way he hired ECU baseball coach Billy Godwin. Godwin was the acting coach for about two months, before he was named to the job fulltime. One has to think that worked out pretty nicely.

McCarthy and his staff may have to spend the month wondering where they’ll be working next season.

If Holland wants to take his time, that’s fine. But if Coach McCarthy isn’t in the mix, then Holland needs to let him know.

Whether or not Coach Mack gets the job fulltime, Holland should be in debt to McCarthy big-time for the way Coach Mack came in and restored order to a train wreck.

This basketball program was a mess, and Mack did what he was asked to do, and that’s to show overall improvement, both on and off the court.


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04/21/2008 07:01:53 PM


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