Davis, Aycock blank Hunt
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on April 30, 2006 2:20 AM
PIKEVILLE -- Garrett Davis provided his sharpest pitching performance of the season and Charles B. Aycock moved one step closer to achieving supremacy on the Class 3-A Eastern Carolina Conference baseball scene Friday evening.
Davis tossed a two-hit gem over six innings and recorded six strikeouts in a 5-0 conquest of league newcomer Wilson Hunt. The state-ranked Golden Falcons improved to 21-1 overall and remained perfect in eight ECC outings with one week of regular-season play remaining.
"Garrett needed that performance," said Aycock coach Charles Davis, whose team collected its 12th consecutive victory on Senior Night. "Any time you shut out Hunt, which normally swings the bats pretty dog-gone well, you feel very fortunate."
A junior right-hander, Davis retired eight consecutive batters in the first three innings. Chris Bryant, who had both hits for the Warriors, spoiled Davis' no-hit bid with a lead-off single in the fourth.
Hunt (5-14, 3-5 ECC) put seven runners aboard over the next three innings combined, but couldn't avoid its second shutout of the season against the Golden Falcons. Grant Sasser fired a three-hitter in a 8-0 victory over the Warriors on March 31.
Junior second baseman Joseph Toler and senior shortstop Will Spence played solid in the middle infield to help Davis (6-0) keep the shutout. Toler notched one putout and three assists, while Spence had two putouts and two assists.
"Joseph played well and made some big defensive plays for us," said Davis.
Jackson Massey, a senior left-hander, retired the Warrior side in the seventh.
"We didn't really hit it that well," said Hunt coach Stevie Hinnant. "Two hits isn't going to get it done."
C.B. Aycock, ranked No. 2 in the latest ImpactBaseball.com 3-A poll, posted five runs in the third against Hunt right-hander Zack Strickland.
Evan Medford started the uprising with a base hit. Spence and Massey each caught the Warrior defense out of position and reached safely on bunt singles to load the bases.
"You've got to stay at third and the pitcher has that side. He never moved to make that play," said Hinnant. "You've got to get an out somewhere off that and we didn't get it.
"That put us in a bind and our pitchers aren't good enough to overcome that."
Strickland (0-3) walked Pilkington and Medford trotted home for the game's first run. Senior catcher Bennett Jeffreys (eight putouts) plated Spence on a sacrifice fly to deep center field to make it 2-0.
With two outs, Bradley Taylor laced a two-RBI single up the middle. Davis capped the five-run rally with an RBI base hit which scored Taylor.
"A big, two-out single in that situation," said coach Davis of Taylor. "Execution is something we've really preached the last couple of days. We didn't swing the bats extremely well, but we swung them decent.
"We really didn't have any bad at-bats tonight."
Hunt's Justin Nygard and Matt Watson combined for four scoreless innings. Nygard relieved Strickland and threw a perfect fourth. Watson retired Aycock in order in the sixth.
The Golden Falcons can clinch of the league's two automatic playoff berths with a victory next Tuesday at county rival Eastern Wayne. They conclude regular-season play next Thursday at Southern Wayne.
"Two big games next week," said Davis. "I've told the kids you've got win the first one before you can win the second one."
Hunt 000 000 0 -- 0 2 1
C.B. Aycock 005 000 x -- 5 7 1
Leading hitters -- Wilson Hunt -- Chris Bryant 2-3. C.B. Aycock -- Will Spence 2-4; Jackson Massey 1-3; Joseph Toler 1-3; Bradley Taylor 1-2, 2 RBI; Garrett Davis 1-3, RBI; Evan Medford 1-2; Thomas Pilkington RBI; Bennett Jeffreys RBI.
LOB -- Hunt 6, C.B. Aycock 5. SB -- Spence, Pilkington. CS -- Jeffreys.
IP H R ER BB SO
Strickland (L, 0-3) 3 6 5 5 2 1
Nygard 2 1 0 0 1 0
Watson 1 0 0 0 0 0
Davis (W, 6-0) 6 2 0 0 1 6
Massey 1 0 0 0 0 2
WP -- Davis. HBP -- Strickland (by Davis), Lamm (by Davis), Pilkington (by Nygard).
T -- 1:39.
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