04/28/11 — ECU-UNC

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By ECU Sports Information
Published in Sports on April 28, 2011 1:47 PM

GREENVILLE -- Jesse Wierzbicki's two-out, two-RBI single in the top of the ninth inning lifted No. 14-ranked North Carolina to a 5-4, non-conference victory over No. 29-ranked East Carolina at Lewis Field inside Clark-LeClair Stadium on Wednesday evening.

A season-high crowd of 4,470 watched the game.

Trailing 4-3 in the ninth, UNC pinch-hitter Matt Roberts laced a first-pitch offering from Seth Simmons down the right-field line for a lead-off double. Jeff Bouton pinch ran for Roberts and took third on Parks Jordan's bunt single down the third-base line before Tommy Coyle loaded the bases with a walk.

Simmons recorded two quick outs before Wierzbicki's game-winning hit.

In the Pirates' ninth, Jonathan Holt singled up the middle to start the inning and moved into scoring position on Trent Whitehead's sac bunt before Michael Morin struck out Jack Reinheimer and Zach Wright picking up his third save of the season.

Patrick Johnson (7-1) got the win, working two-thirds of an inning in the eighth. Starter Chris Munnelly allowed three runs (all unearned) on six hits with a pair of walks and two strikeouts in 4 1/13 innings. Shane Taylor was touched for a run (earned) in two-thirds of an inning and Greg Holt bridged the gap to Johnson working two-plus scoreless innings of relief with three walks and four strikeouts.

Simmons (5-2) suffered the loss, giving up the game-tying and go-ahead runs in the ninth. Joseph Hughes made his first start of the season giving up three runs (one earned) on two hits in three-plus innings. Kevin Brandt and Brad Mincey combined for 4 1/3 innings of scoreless relief.

ECU jumped out to an early 3-0 lead behind Zach Wright's 10th home run of the season in the third innings. With two outs, Whitehead singled up the middle and moved over to second when Reinheimer reached on an error by Coyle. Wright stepped into the box and deposited a 1-2 offering to center field for his 27th career round-tripper.

UNC knotted the game at three in the top half of the fourth.

The Pirates regained the lead in the sixth.

Each team collected eight hits. With Wright's homer in the third, ECU has belted nine home runs in its last five games hitting at least one in four of the last five contests.

The Pirates (27-14 overall) entertain Conference USA rival and No. 15-ranked Southern Miss for a three-game series this weekend.