You are currently viewing An update from AD Jon Gilbert

An update from AD Jon Gilbert

Pirate Nation:

It’s hard to believe that the 2021-22 school year officially ends this week. We have 66 student-athletes graduating this week, including 13 who will be receiving their master’s degrees. Watching our student-athletes pass the graduation ceremony is always an emotional moment for our coaches and staff. We are extremely proud of our student-athletes who have graduated, many of whom are already accepting full-time jobs in their respective fields. You also know how much we will miss them on campus. That’s why we got into this business and it’s still the best part of the job. These are the same student-athletes who have spent two years competing during a pandemic. Hackers persevere and this group did just that.

We have been challenged by unprecedented times, but our student-athletes have never wavered in their discipline and dedication to protect each other. We’ve had cancellations, postponements, isolation, remote learning, lots of COVID testing and they never let their guard down.

Two of our annual events returned last month with the Goldspys, hosted by our student-athletes, and the Breakfast of Champions. Both events have been on hiatus for the past two years due to COVID and we are fortunate to be able to bring everyone back into a face-to-face setting. You could feel the energy in the Goldspys room as friends and teammates got to be together one last time. Special congratulations to Mrs. Pirate Sommer Knight (athletics) and Mr. Pirate Zach Agnos (baseball).

ECU will host two AAC Championships starting today
The Grady-White Boats Athletic Campus will be buzzing over the next two weeks starting this afternoon. We are fortunate to host two conference tournaments over the next two weeks. These events have a huge financial impact on the community, with teams from all over the country traveling to Greenville, filling hotel rooms and eating at local restaurants. We also appreciate our staff who will work countless hours to provide first class hospitality to our visitors.

The AAC Women’s Lacrosse Championships begin today at Johnson Stadium when the fourth-seeded Pirates meet the top-seeded Florida Gators at 4:30 p.m. Temple and Vanderbilt will follow at 7:15 p.m. in the second semifinal. The championship game is scheduled for Saturday.

We are thrilled with our lacrosse program under the guidance of Head Coach Amanda Moore, making their first playoff appearance in team history. I know our student-athletes, coaches and staff would love to see lots of purple and gold in the stadium this afternoon.

Our department will host the AAC Softball Championship Thursday, May 12 through Saturday, May 14 at Max R. Joyner Family Stadium. The Pirates will be joined by UCF, Wichita State, South Florida, Houston, Tulsa and Memphis in Greenville.

Admission is free for both championships.

Baseball program ends regular season with eight straight home games
The Pirates baseball team is back in action Friday with a three-game series in Memphis. We had great weather and a great crowd last weekend at Clark-LeClair Stadium to watch the Pirates sweep Cincinnati. After the visit to Memphis, the Pirates will wrap up the regular season with eight straight home games.

Make plans to come to the park and support the team.

Pirate Club Armadas Off And Rolling
The Pirate Club kicked off its Armada 2022 tour earlier this week with lunch at McCalls BBQ in Goldsboro. We had a lot of people to hear from the men’s basketball head coach Michael Schwartz talk about his first 48 days at the helm and what fans can expect in his first season.

We are lucky that the Armadas can return after two years of COVID postponements as it is important that we meet our fans across the community and surrounding region. There’s nothing like in-person communication, answering questions, giving updates, and hearing how we can improve as a service.

We have many opportunities to meet our coaches and staff in May. The Pirate Club has scheduled 10 Armadas in May, including one for Greenville next Tuesday before the baseball game against Duke. The event will begin at 4:30 p.m. at the Carl and Connie Rogers Pirate Club at TowneBank Tower. We expect nearly all of the head coaches and several student-athletes to attend. You can RSVP here for a night of Logan’s Roadhouse food, drinks, and baseball game tickets.

You can see Armada’s full schedule here.

Athletics set to compete in AAC Championships
The Pirates track teams will depart for Wichita, Kansas next week to compete in the AAC Outdoor Championships May 13-15. NCAA Regionals are scheduled for May 26-28 at the Indiana University campus in Bloomington.

We look forward to seeing you on campus over the next few weeks as we host the AAC Lacrosse and Softball Championships and root our baseball and softball teams as they wrap up the regular season.

Happy Mother’s Day
Happy Mother’s Day to all Pirate Nation moms. I am grateful for all the moms (Marietta Gilbert!) and all they do to lead and support their families.

Thank you for your continued support.

Go pirates!

Jon

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