Behind a strong outing from starting pitcher Kyle Hansen and a 16-hit offensive attack, the St. John's Red Storm opened the 2012 NCAA Tournament with an 11-3 thrashing of the East Carolina Pirates.
Hansen, expected to be selected in the first 10 rounds of the upcoming MLB draft, allowed three runs in 7 1/3 innings, striking out eight and allowing eight hits. He was working on a shutout until East Carolina finally reached him for three earned runs in the eighth frame.
St. John's opened the scoring in the top of the second inning when Jeremy Baltz, who doubled to center to lead off the inning, scored from third on a sacrifice groundout by Zach Lauricella.
The Red Storm pushed another run across in the third on another sacrifice groundout, and three more on four hits in the fifth. Baltz blasted a solo home run in the seventh inning to make the score 6-0, and St. John's added five insurance runs in the final two innings.
Matt Wessinger was 3-for-4 with two RBI for St. John's. Sean O'Hare also had three hits, and Kyle Richardson was 2-for-5 with two RBI and two runs scored.
The full 2012 NCAA tournament bracket can be found at NCAA.com.