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    Wilkins Cruises, No. 25 Pack Drops ECU 6-1

    April 2, 2013

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    Top Performers: Brett Williams (2-for-4, 3 RBI, 2 2B, R, SB), Ryan Wilkins (W, 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 5 K)

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    GREENVILLE, N.C. - Ryan Wilkins held East Carolina hitless for five innings and Brett Williams drove in three as No. 25 NC State baseball dropped the Pirates 6-1 on Tuesday at Clark-LeClair Stadium.

    The Wolfpack (20-10) took control with three runs in the third and built a 5-0 lead with single-run innings in the seventh and eighth. ECU (14-15) tightened the contest by scoring once in the eighth before loading the bases. State escaped that jam and added an insurance run in the ninth to pull away.

    NC State batters did not strike out in the game, the last time that happened was March 17, 2006. Wolfpack pitchers did not walk a batter in the game, for the second time this season.

    Williams had a monster day with three RBIs, a run and a stolen base on a pair of doubles to the wall in left. Carlos Rodon started at designated hitter and contributed the first multi-hit outing of his career with two singles. Jake Fincher went 2-for-5 to reach base in a game for the 29th time in 30 contests. Trea Turner went hitless, but drove in two runs. Jake Armstrong supplied the Pack’s other RBI.

    State leadoff hitters reached six times on the night, while only one East Carolina leadoff made it aboard. Williams’ three-RBI game is the most he’s had since Feb. 27 against New Mexico State. Brett Austin’s seven-game hit streak came to a close, but the sophomore extended his current reached-base streak to 19 games.

    Wilkins (3-1) looked phenomenal in a rare start -- his first since Feb. 24 and only the third of his career -- striking out five while holding the Pirates hitless for five innings. Wilkins retired 15 of the 16 batters he faced. The only runner to reach came on a fielding error in the fourth. Josh Easley worked the next 2 1/3, holding the Pirates to one earned on four hits. Grant Sasser closed the deal for his second save of the year with three strikeouts in 1 2/3 and no hits allowed.

    ECU starter Ryan Williams (5-2) took the loss on four runs, two earned, over seven innings. The Pirates utilized three more pitchers, who combined to allow two runs, one earned, on three hits over the final two innings.

    The first three leadoff batters of the game reached for the Pack, but State had to wait until the third inning to strike. Clyde started the action with a single up the middle. An error by the third baseman allowed Ratledge to reach behind him on a sac bunt attempt. Williams pushed both runs across with a two-run double off of the left field wall. Turner knocked him in during the next at-bat, with a grounder to short after Williams stole third.

    In the meantime, Wilkins continued to cruise through the East Carolina order. He left after five innings with a no-hitter.

    State added one in the seventh after Rodon’s leadoff single. Brian Taylor entered as a pinch runner and moved to second on a sac bunt. Williams drove in his third run of the day with a two-out RBI double, again to the wall in left.

    Another insurance run came to the plate with a two-out rally in the eighth. Senay smoked a double into the right field corner. Armstrong drove an RBI single up the middle next to make it 5-0.

    East Carolina made it interesting in the eighth by bringing the tying run to the plate. A hit batsman represented the first Pirate leadoff to reach in the game and he crossed the plate on an RBI single one out later. Two more singles loaded the bases and prompted a pitching change. Sasser entered there and escaped the jam with a called strike three and a grounder to short, marking the sixth time in 15 attempts this year that Wolfpack relievers have come in with the bases loaded and held the opposition scoreless.

    NC State returns to action on Wednesday when Elon visits Doak Field at Dail Park. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. Radio coverage will be provided by 88.1 WKNC, and streaming will be available for subscribers at GoPack All-Access. Fans can also follow along with live stats on, or on Twitter via @NCStateBaseball.



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