04/01/07 — Golden Falcons force first-place tie at top of ECC

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Golden Falcons force first-place tie at top of ECC

By Rob Craig
Published in Sports on April 1, 2007 2:15 AM

Garrett Davis peered at his catcher for the sign, kicked his leg high into the air and delivered the pitch past the Eastern Wayne batter and into Zack Wright's glove for a third strike.

The scene was repeated again and again Friday as Davis notched 12 strikeouts in helping Charles B. Aycock defeat archrival Eastern Wayne 4-1 in Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference action.

"Garrett looked very sharp today," said Aycock coach Charles Davis. "I was very pleased with the way that he threw the ball. I thought Zack Wright did a great job behind the plate today catching him, too."

In a dominating performance, Davis (2-1) would set the Warriors down 1-2-3 in five of his seven innings of work while allowing four singles, one earned run and no walks.

"I think this is one of the first games I've ever pitched where I didn't have any walks," said Davis. "I threw strikes and our defense made plays behind me."

While Aycock fielded the ball flawlessly on the evening, Eastern Wayne had several defensive miscues.

The Warriors committed three costly errors -- one of which directly led to three runs for the Golden Falcons.

With the score tied at 1-1 in the top of the third inning, Brandon Price had led off with a single and Will Edgerton reached when he was hit by a Taylor Sutton pitch. Bradley Taylor then bunted a pitch back to Sutton who made a wild throw to third, allowing Price and Edgerton to score.

Then, with two outs and Taylor standing 90 feet away, a Sutton pitch got by catcher Tyler Wicks allowing the runner to score to make it 4-1 Golden Falcons.

"(Aycock) made defensive plays and we didn't," said Eastern Wayne coach Jabo Fulghum. "Taylor just wasn't on today like he normally is, but he'll bounce back."

Sutton finished the game allowing four runs (one earned) on four hits, walked two and struck out three.

Coach Davis was pleased with his team's ability to put the ball in play against a tough pitcher.

"I thought we battled early on," he said. "(Eastern Wayne) booted a few balls and threw it around some. I felt when we did put the ball in play, we made things happen."

John Wooten prevented Aycock from doing any more damage when he entered in the fifth inning with the bases loaded and only one out. Wooten was able to get out of the jam by fanning Taylor and getting Thomas Pilkington to hit a weak liner.

Wooten would throw 22/3 scoreless innings of relief for the Warriors.

"We thought John could give us a ground ball and that's why we brought him in," said Fulghum. "We've got a lot of confidence in him."

Those four runs, however, proved to be all the support Davis would need as he overpowered the Warrior hitters. The University of North Carolina-bound right-hander would strike out two batters in five different innings and allow only one hit follow the first inning.

It was only fitting that Davis would end the game by popping his catcher's glove with a called third strike.

"Garrett was pretty much in command the whole ballgame," coach Davis said. "He hit his spots well and didn't try to over throw. He's got to realize his ball has a lot of movement."

The victory by the Golden Falcons (8-3, 3-1) moves them into a first place tie with Eastern Wayne (5-8, 3-1) in the ECC standings.

"Garrett Davis threw a heck of a ballgame," said Fulghum. "With a kid like Davis on the mound, we have to make adjustments and I don't think we did that today."

Aycock 103 000 0 -- 4 4 0

E. Wayne 100 000 0 -- 1 4 3

Leading Hitters -- C.B. Aycock -- Bradley Taylor 1-3, 2B, 2 R; Garrett Davis 1-4, RBI; Brandon Price 1-3, run; Jay Rose 1-2. Eastern Wayne -- Taylor Sutton 1-3, RBI, Walker Gourley 1-3; John Wooten 1-3; Jose Ponce 1-2.

DP -- C.B. Aycock 1, Eastern Wayne 1. LOB -- C.B. Aycock 6, Eastern Wayne 1. SB -- Davis 3, Toler, Wright. S -- Wright, Pilkington, Taylor.


C.B. Aycock

Davis (W, 2-1) 7 4 1 1 0 12

Eastern Wayne

Sutton (L) 41/3 4 4 1 2 3

Wooten 22/3 0 0 0 0 2

WP -- Davis, Sutton. PB -- Wicks. HBP -- by Sutton (Edgerton, Toler).