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Pennington, Lyons Combine to Shut Out East Carolina, 5-0

April 29, 2015  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Matt Pennington threw seven scoreless innings in 5-0 win over East Carolina, Wednesday.

Matt Pennington threw seven scoreless innings in 5-0 win over East Carolina, Wednesday.

Liberty pitchers Matt Pennington and Jared Lyons to shut down the East Carolina Pirates, 5-0, Wednesday afternoon at Liberty Baseball Stadium.

Pennington, making his first start of the year and appearing for the first time since March 20, pitched seven scoreless innings. The senior left-hander records his first career victory, moving to 1-1 on the year. He scattered five hits, while striking out five and walking three. 

The outing was the longest of Pennington's career. The left-hander strikeout total was also a career single-game high.

Lyons, the reigning Big South Pitcher of the Week and conference ERA leader, retired all six batters he faced over the final two innings. He struck out four and did not walk a batter.

It was only the third time this season that East Carolina has been shut out.

Liberty moves to 29-17 on the year. East Carolina drops to 29-17. The loss snaps a six-game Pirates winning streak. In addition, the Flames take both meeting between the two teams this season. Earlier in the year, Liberty defeated East Carolina, 4-3, in the Keith LeClair Classic in Greenville, S.C. on February 22.

After a Pirates scoring threat was turned away in the first by Pennington, Liberty plated two runs in the second inning. With one out and the bases loaded, left fielder Nick Paxton walked to force in the first run of the contest. Two batters later, center fielder Ashton Perritt drew a two-out bases loaded walk for a 2-0 edge.

The Flames extended their advantage with two more runs in the fourth. With two outs, second baseman Nick Salisbury reached on an infield single and advanced to second when Perritt was hit by a pitch. Shortstop Dalton Britt followed with another infield single, allowing Salisbury to score for a 3-0 edge. First base Alex Close then singled through the left side of the infield, plating Perritt for a 4-0 lead.

Liberty tacked on an insurance run in the eighth. Paxton singled with two outs and end up on third base when the ball was got by Pirates left fielder Luke Lowery. Salisbury followed by beating out a high chopper behind the mound for an infield single to bring in Paxton for what proved to be the final score of 5-0.

East Carolina starting pitcher David Lucroy falls to 2-4 on the year. The first of four Pirates to take the mound in the contest, the right-hander gave up two runs on one hit. He struck out two batters, walked a batter and hit three batters.

The Flames collected seven hits in the contest. Britt had two hits and a RBI, extending his hitting streak to 13 games, the longest for a Liberty player this season. Salisbury also recorded two hits, driving in a run and scoring a run.

Liberty has six days off for exams, before returning to action next Wednesday. The Flames will host the Richmond Spiders at Liberty Baseball Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m.