Pirates prepare for senior night
When East Carolina and Elon meet inside of Clark-LeClair Stadium tonight, it will mark the final home game for seniors and co-captains Reid Love and Hunter Allen. Love and Allen stand as the only two seniors on the young Pirate team and were fittingly voted captains before the season’s start. Now, though, their playing days in the purple and gold are numbered. “Reid and I both were named captain but there’s not just two captains on this team,” Allen said. “Everybody on this team is a captain and we all gel together and hold each other accountable.” Allen joined the team last season and assumed the starting shortstop position after spending two seasons at Brunswick Community College. In his first year as a Pirate, Allen finished third on the team with a .308 batting average and notched two game-winning hits. This season, the senior shortstop has topped the Pirate lineup with his .339 average and 57 hits. He has also started in all but two games this season for ECU. Love, like Allen, spent time at a community college before becoming ECU’s ace this season. As both a pitcher and an outfielder, Love has been one of ECU’s most valuable players this season. He’s hitting .304 with three home runs at the plate while boasting a team-best six wins on the mound. His 62 strikeouts lead all Pirate arms and he has spent time as a starter and a closer this season. Though they didn’t start their collegiate careers at ECU, first year coach Cliff Godwin noted that the senior tandem was a big part in the leadership core of his young club. The Pirates are in a battle for the American Athletic Conference title despite having just nine upperclassmen on their roster. Allen and Love’s experience have helped mold the team into postseason contenders. “They don’t care who gets the success all they care about is the winning,” Godwin said. “That’s why we’ve had this success this season.” The success this season is a major turnaround from the underwhelming campaign a year ago. Ushering in Godwin, an ECU alum and former catcher, has helped propel the Pirates to what will seemingly be a regional appearance.
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