BIRMINGHAM, Ala. ---- Leading 4-1 in the seventh inning, East Carolina outscored the UAB baseball team 8-1 over the final three frames to claim Sunday's contest, 9-5 at Young Memorial Field.
The loss dropped the Blazers to 16-24 overall and 3-9 in conference play, while the Pirates improved to an even 20-20 and 6-6 in C-USA action.
Starter James Naile pitched great for the Green and Gold, working into the seventh inning. The righty, who did not figure in the decision, yielded only two earned runs off two hits with a pair of strikeouts.
The seventh inning was when things turned in favor of the visiting Pirates. ECU batted around, scoring five times by use of three hits to take its first lead of the day, 6-4. The big blow came on bases clearing double off the bat of Drew Reynolds.
UAB responded and pulled within a run, 6-5, on a RBI from Harry Clark that scored Ivan De Jesus, who tripled off the wall earlier in the last of the seventh. Unfortunately, that was as close as the Blazers would get the rest of the afternoon.
However, ECU added a run in the eighth and two more in the ninth, including a solo homer from Chase McDonald to round out the scoring.
The Blazers built up its 4-1 lead, by scoring single runs in the first three frames and one more in the sixth. UAB's first run came home on a wild pitch, Wes Kent squeezed in a run in the second and Tanner Bryant ripped a RBI single in the third. In addition, Ryan Prinzing hit a towering sac fly to center to account for the Blazers' fourth run of the day in the sixth.
UAB knocked out ECU's Ryan Williams in the fourth, but Pirates' reliever Jake Harris fired 3.1 innings to pick up the victory. Reynolds earned the save, working two scoreless frames to close out the contest.
Bryant led UAB with two hits and one RBI, while Prinzing doubled, scored and knocked in a run. John Frost doubled and scored to prolong his hitting streak to 20 consecutive games.
On the mound, Turner Lee (1-2) was saddled with the loss working out of the UAB bullpen. The lefty allowed two runs and was unable to record an out.
The Blazers hit the road for their next contest, traveling to Montgomery, Ala., to play Alabama State on Tuesday. First pitch is set for 6 p.m. CT.
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