Despite three homers, the No. 12 North Carolina baseball team (4-3), surrendered six runs in the seventh and lost to the No. 11 East Carolina University Pirates (5-1), 6-5, Sunday afternoon at Boshamer Stadium.
UNC started scoring early when junior Tomas Frick doubled down the right field line bringing home sophomore Vance Honeycutt, who was walked earlier in the inning.
Offensive production for the Diamond Heels stalled until the fourth frame when, after his fifth strikeout of the season, the preseason All-American Honeycutt launched a 431-foot moonshot over the left field fence for his first home run of the season.
Pirates Alec Markarewicz would not sit idly by, as he homered an inning later to left field. Bovair responded to the shot by racking up two strikeouts before the frame concluded.
The fifth inning saw the Diamond Heels find offensive rhythm as redshirt freshman Casey Cook doubled to right field and was immediately driven in when South Carolina native Frick launched one 403 feet for his first homer of the season.
The speak-and-reply offensive tango of the Pirates and Heels continued as ECU found their second run in the top of the sixth. Jacob Starling walked and was bumped into scoring position as Justin Wilcoxen hit a single right past the outstretched glove of second baseman Jackson Van De Brake. Starling eventually scored on a fielder’s choice RBI by Luke Nowak.
Two home runs were not enough for the Diamond Heels as junior Mac Horvath hit a solo blast to left field to notch his fourth homer of the season.
Again, the Pirates would not go quietly as the seventh saw the Tar Heel lead snatched away in a four-run frame as the Pirates capitalized on doubles down the left field line by Starling and Lane Hoover.