GREENVILLE, N.C. – Missouri State came up on the wrong end of a 3-0 pitcher’s duel in Friday’s series opener at 10th-ranked East Carolina, failing to put a run on the board for the first time in nearly two years against the Pirates at Clark-LeClair Stadium.
ECU (14-4) starter Trey Yesavage struck out 11 without a walk and yielded four hits to the Bears in 7.1 innings, and the Pirates scratched across a two-out run in the fourth with an infield single and added a two-out, two-run homer in the eighth for insurance.
Brandt Thompson was solid yet again for the Bears (11-6) on the mound, allowing a run on four hits with five strikeouts in six innings to lower his ERA to 2.35 on the season.
Spencer Nivens paced the offense by going 2-for-3 with a walk. His first-inning double was the center fielder’s 15th extra-base hit in 17 games and extended his hitting streak to 10 games, the third double-digit streak of his career.
Cody Kelly and Dylan Robertson collected Missouri State’s other two hits, while Zack Stewart’s hitting streak came to an end after 13 games, the longest by a true freshman at MSU since 2016.
The Bears’ offense was on the cusp several times, putting runners in scoring position in five different innings but unable to break through. Missouri State left the bases loaded in the sixth frame with its best scoring chance.
Game two of the series is scheduled for 3 p.m. Central on Saturday.