Williams awarded LeClair’s No. 23 jersey for 2014 - WRBL

Williams awarded LeClair’s No. 23 jersey for 2014

Posted: Updated:

Senior Ryan Williams will wear East Carolina's honorary No. 23 jersey for the 2014 season according to an announcement by head coach Billy Godwin during the program's annual "Meet The Pirates' fan session, which was held inside the Murphy Center Saturday afternoon.

The No. 23 jersey, which was the number worn by the late ECU Head Coach Keith LeClair throughout his coaching and playing career, became an honorary number for the Pirate program in 2003.

"Ryan is very passionate about East Carolina," Godwin said. "He has a champions heart with a great work ethic, whose selfless approach is contagious. He embodies all the characteristics (determination and desire) associated with wearing the No. 23 jersey, and will wear it with great pride and help carry on its legacy within the ECU community."

After transferring from West Valley College, Williams appeared in 18 games making 15 starts where he posted a 6-2 record with a 4.50 ERA during his initial year with the Pirates. The right-hander from Morgan Hill, Calif., allowed 55 runs (48 earned) in 96.0 innings and struck out 45 batters while walking just 17 – ranking second in Conference USA.

Williams made his Pirate debut against No. 25 Virginia (Feb. 16) surrendering four runs (three earned) on six hits over six innings with a pair of punch-outs in a no-decision. In his next three starts, he notched wins against Boston College (Feb. 22), St. John's (Mar. 2) and Monmouth (Mar. 9) tossing at least seven full innings in each outing. He improved to 4-0 with a win at Jacksonville (Mar. 16) in his fifth start, followed by relief victories at Elon (Mar. 27) and Gardner-Webb (Apr. 30) pushing his season total to six wins, tying Jeff Hoffman for the team lead.

In all, he worked at least six full innings in eight starts, allowed three or fewer runs on seven occasions and recorded at least five strikeouts four times with a season-high seven at Elon. Williams tallied five quality starts (6.0 IP, 3 or less runs) ranking third on the staff behind Hoffman (11) and David Lucroy (seven).

"This is an unbelievable honor and words can not describe what I am feeling right now," Williams said after putting on the No. 23 jersey. "Two years ago when I came to Greenville and saw the passion that the fans have for East Carolina and its baseball team, I knew this was home. This is the highest honor a baseball player can receive at ECU and I believe it's the best honor and tradition in all of college baseball."

The honorary No. 23 is awarded annually to a deserving player who best displays the hustle, determination and desire that made LeClair a great coach and player.

Williams becomes the ninth senior and 11th Pirate to wear the honorary No. 23 jersey following Ben Sanderson (2003), Jamie Paige (2004), Brian Cavanaugh (2005), Adam Witter (2006), Chris Powell (2007), Drew Schieber (2008), Brandon Henderson (2009), two-time winner Austin Homan (2010-11), Timothy Younger (2012) and Jay Cannon (2013).

LeClair's courageous battle against amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly referred to as ALS or Lou Gehrig's Disease, has garnered support and admiration throughout the ECU and collegiate baseball community.

The Pirates will open the 2014 season on Friday, Feb. 14 when they play host to James Madison. First pitch scheduled for 3 p.m. (EST).

  • SportsMore>>

  • Coach Ruff holds his annual fantasy camp

    Coach Ruff holds his annual fantasy camp

    Friday, July 25 2014 5:29 PM EDT2014-07-25 21:29:48 GMT
    Have you ever wondered what your favorite Pirates have to do to be successful? It is not easy as we found out today at Coach Ruffin McNeill's Fantasy Camp.
    Have you ever wondered what your favorite Pirates have to do to be successful? It is not easy as we found out today at Coach Ruffin McNeill's Fantasy Camp.
  • NC College Head Coaches gather for 12th Annual Bill Dooley Chapter Pigskin Preview

    NC College Head Coaches gather for 12th Annual Bill Dooley Chapter Pigskin Preview

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:09 PM EDT2014-07-25 03:09:38 GMT
    College football season is right around the corner and the anticipation is certainly building towards August 30th. Many of our states best coaches were on hand for the 12th Annual Bill Dooley Chapter Pigskin Preview today in Cary, NC.
    College football season is right around the corner and the anticipation is certainly building towards August 30th. Many of our states best coaches were on hand for the 12th Annual Bill Dooley Chapter Pigskin Preview today in Cary, NC.
  • East Carolina Athletics, WNCT-TV Announce Television Partnership

    East Carolina Athletics, WNCT-TV Announce Television Partnership

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 3:11 PM EDT2014-07-22 19:11:18 GMT
    The East Carolina University Department of Athletics, in conjunction with its multimedia rights partner IMG College, have agreed to terms with WNCT-TV on a three-year contract which will re-establish a broadcast relationship dating back to 1989 and enable the region's CBS affiliate to regain its standing as the "Official Station of the Pirates."
    The East Carolina University Department of Athletics, in conjunction with its multimedia rights partner IMG College, have agreed to terms with WNCT-TV on a three-year contract which will re-establish a broadcast relationship dating back to 1989 and enable the region's CBS affiliate to regain its standing as the "Official Station of the Pirates."
  • ECU SportsMore>>

  • Coach Ruff holds his annual fantasy camp

    Coach Ruff holds his annual fantasy camp

    Friday, July 25 2014 5:29 PM EDT2014-07-25 21:29:48 GMT
    Have you ever wondered what your favorite Pirates have to do to be successful? It is not easy as we found out today at Coach Ruffin McNeill's Fantasy Camp.
    Have you ever wondered what your favorite Pirates have to do to be successful? It is not easy as we found out today at Coach Ruffin McNeill's Fantasy Camp.
  • NC College Head Coaches gather for 12th Annual Bill Dooley Chapter Pigskin Preview

    NC College Head Coaches gather for 12th Annual Bill Dooley Chapter Pigskin Preview

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:09 PM EDT2014-07-25 03:09:38 GMT
    College football season is right around the corner and the anticipation is certainly building towards August 30th. Many of our states best coaches were on hand for the 12th Annual Bill Dooley Chapter Pigskin Preview today in Cary, NC.
    College football season is right around the corner and the anticipation is certainly building towards August 30th. Many of our states best coaches were on hand for the 12th Annual Bill Dooley Chapter Pigskin Preview today in Cary, NC.
  • East Carolina Athletics, WNCT-TV Announce Television Partnership

    East Carolina Athletics, WNCT-TV Announce Television Partnership

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 3:11 PM EDT2014-07-22 19:11:18 GMT
    The East Carolina University Department of Athletics, in conjunction with its multimedia rights partner IMG College, have agreed to terms with WNCT-TV on a three-year contract which will re-establish a broadcast relationship dating back to 1989 and enable the region's CBS affiliate to regain its standing as the "Official Station of the Pirates."
    The East Carolina University Department of Athletics, in conjunction with its multimedia rights partner IMG College, have agreed to terms with WNCT-TV on a three-year contract which will re-establish a broadcast relationship dating back to 1989 and enable the region's CBS affiliate to regain its standing as the "Official Station of the Pirates."
Powered by WorldNow

1350 13th Avenue
Columbus, GA 31901

Telephone: 706.323.3333
Fax: 706.327.6655
Email: news@wrbl.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.