Post 11 pitchers shut out Martin County
By Gabe Whisnant
Published in Sports on June 7, 2004 1:55 PM
MOUNT OLIVE -- Wayne County American Legion left-handed pitcher Adam Williams exudes a quiet confidence.
He knows that if he does his job and throws strikes, behind him is a defense that is plenty capable of backing up his effort.
Sunday night at Scarborough Field, Williams -- along with fellow pitchers Mike Oglesby and Phillip Cunningham -- did just that, allowing a combined three hits while striking out 10 in a 5-0 win over Martin County.
"I've got to give a lot of credit to the defense," Williams said. "When you've got guys like that back behind you, it gives you a lot of confidence to just make your pitches and throw strikes."
Williams (2-0) allowed just one walk in six innings of two-hit work, while Oglesby, who struck out four in two innings in his first appearance of the season, and Cunningham walked none.
Post 11 pitchers have now struck out 21 batters combined in the last two games heading into their Area One East/South Division opener today at home against Pitt County West.
"There is nothing wrong with the strike outs, but it gets into our pitch count," Wayne County coach Brad Reaves said. "I would like to see us play a little more defense, because I think we can play pretty dang good defense."
Williams got all the run support he would need early on as Erik Lovett singled in Garrett Sutton with a single to right field in the first to open the scoring against Post 163's Brooks Walker. Jes Snyder and Todd MacCoy had run-scoring, extra base hits in the third to give Wayne County (5-0) a 4-0 cushion.
Snyder tripled to left-center to plate Sutton, who walked for the second time in three innings. MacCoy hustled into second for a double to right-center and scored Snyder.
Williams didn't allow a hit in innings three through six and allowed only one base runner during that stretch, yielding a one-out walk to Ben Lilly in the fifth. After a perfect sixth by Williams that featured a sparkling, diving grab by Garrett Sutton in shallow center field, Reeves handed the ball to Mike Oglesby for two innings, and then to Cunningham to close out the ninth, who tossed his second straight final inning of work.
"I hated to go get Adam Williams. He was throwing a gem, but I don't want to throw these kids more than 70 or 80 pitches right now," Reeves said. "Oglesby came in and did a great job for not throwing in more than a year, and Cunningham is starting Tuesday against Pitt County, and I wanted to get him a bullpen."
Post 11 went into a lull offensively in the middle innings -- putting lead-off runners on base in the fifth and sixth but not managing to bring them around. Wayne County went a combined 2-9 with runners in scoring position before posting its final run in the bottom of the eighth as Airlon Vinson, who tripled, raced home on a sacrifice fly to center by Cunningham.
Reeves is obviously pleased with a 5-0 start to the season, but believes the team is falling short in their mental approach on game day.
"I'm concerned with our attitude coming to the ball park," he said. "I think this group can be special, but I'm concerned with our focus and concentration. I think it starts when they get here at 4:30.
"We are just going through the motions right now."
The loss dropped Martin County to 0-3 on the season as it hosts New Bern on Thursday.
Wayne County began a nine-games in 10-days stretch on Sunday, beginning with Pitt County West today at home and a road tilt with New Bern on Tuesday.
Martin County 000 000 000 -- 0 3 0
Wayne County 103 000 01x -- 5 9 1
Leading hitters -- Wayne County -- Philip Pennington 2-3, 2B; Jes Snyder 2-4, 3B, RBI; Todd MacCoy 1-4, 2B, RBI; Erik Lovett 1-2, RBI; Airlon Vinson 1-4, 3B, run.
IP H R ER BB SO
Brooks Walker (L) 8 9 5 5 2 7
Adam Williams (W, 2-0) 6 2 0 0 1 5
Mike Oglesby 2 0 0 0 0 4
Phillip Cunningham 1 1 0 0 0 1
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