04/08/07 — Davis, C.B. Aycock handcuff Watauga

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Davis, C.B. Aycock handcuff Watauga

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on April 8, 2007 2:02 AM

KINSTON -- An early-season plan of limiting a pitcher's inning and keeping a watchful eye on the pitch count is starting to pay dividends for Charles B. Aycock.

Garrett Davis validated the scheme Saturday afternoon. The senior right-hander recorded 15 strikeouts and tossed a one-hitter in a 10-0 dismantling of Boone Watauga in the second annual George Whitfield Invitational contested at venerable Grainger Stadium.

Davis threw his second consecutive complete game in as many starts and the state-ranked Golden Falcons (11-3) claimed their sixth consecutive win. They oppose longtime nemesis North Lenoir in a semifinal-round game Monday at Kinston High School. Game time is 6:30 p.m.

Watauga (5-10) meets South Central in consolation-round play at 11 a.m.

Davis (3-1) yielded a second-inning single and sixth-inning walk in the 1-hour, 53-minute affair. In between, the University of North Carolina signee retired 14 straight batters, including 10 by strikeouts. Davis has notched a combined 27 strikeouts in his last two outings.

"I wasn't throwing as hard because it was cold," said Davis. "I had control; hit spots and all my pitches were working."

No kidding.

Davis handcuffed Watauga's batters with a fastball-slider combination and threw either pitch at any time in the count. The Pioneers, surprisingly, never adjusted at the plate and waved at numerous pitches as they popped into catcher Zack Wright's glove.

"They were all out in front of my slider," said Davis. "Honestly, I thought they were going to be a little bit better because I heard they hit (UNC recruit) Madison Bumgardner and scored a couple of runs off him.

"I thought they might hit a little better (today)."

Watauga, of the Class 4-A Northwest Conference, grounded out once and flew out on three occasions. The Pioneers boosted their team strikeout total to 142 in 15 outings.

Catcher Rich Minford provided Watauga's lone hit -- a one-out single. Courtesy runner Caleb Martin stole second, but wasted the scoring chance when the Pioneers botched a squeeze-bunt play. Wright chased Martin back to third and into the waiting glove of Pilkington, who applied the inning-ending tag.

"When Garrett throws the ball like he did today, other teams don't have a whole lot of chances to score runs," said C.B. Aycock head coach Charles Davis. "He kept his fastball down low and threw his curveball for a strike. The main thing right now is his change-up is working real well.

"I'm just tickled to death with his performance."

But it looked as if Davis would get little run support in unseasonably cold conditions. Will Edgerton doubled in the second inning and Connor Narron connected on a lead-off double in the fourth. Both runners were left stranded in scoring position.

"You've got to at least score one out of that," said Garrett Davis of the extra-base hits.

Aycock stranded a combined six men on base in the first four innings and batted a paltry 1-for-11 with five runners in scoring position. That offensive futility ended in the fifth inning with the Golden Falcons ahead 1-0.

Davis laced a two-strike single into right field and scored Bradley Taylor, who walked and stole second base, in the fifth inning. The run-scoring hit ignited a five-run uprising.

"I was just trying to get on base," said Davis, who finished with two of the Golden Falcons' 14 hits. "I had two strikes and was looking to put anything in play; move him (Taylor) over to third.

"I got a hit ... luckily."

Wright delivered an RBI single and Thomas Pilkington cranked out a two-RBI triple, which chased Pioneer right-hander Adam Chiarlonzio from the mound. Chiarlonzio, the team's normal closer, had thrown just nine innings prior to his first start of the season.

Brandon Price added an RBI single to conclude the scoring.

The Golden Falcons plated two runs in each of the sixth and seventh innings. Eight of nine starters supplied at least one hit, while pinch-hitters Stephen Strouse and Evan Medford delivered RBI singles.

"We finally got that hit and things started to roll," said coach Davis. "We had chances to really put it away early, and that was my concern. Other than that, we came ready to play."

Aycock 100 052 2 -- 10 14 1

Watauga 000 000 0 -- 0 1 3

Leading hitters -- C.B. Aycock -- Will Edgerton 2-3, 2B; Garrett Davis 2-4, RBI; Zack Wright 1-4, 2B, RBI; Stephen Strouse 1-1, 2B, RBI; Evan Medford 1-1, RBI; Connor Narron 2-4, 2B, 3B, RBI; Thomas Pilkington 2-3, 2B, 3B, 3 RBI; Brandon Price 1-4, RBI. Watauga -- Rich Minford 1-2.

LOB -- C.B. Aycock 11, Watauga 1. SB -- Edgerton, Davis, Rose, Taylor, Minford. CS -- Minford. SH -- Pilkington. SF -- Rose.


C.B. Aycock

Davis (W, 3-1) 7 1 0 0 1 15


Chiarlonzio (L, 0-1) 4 6 5 4 1 2

Wallace 3 8 5 5 2 4

HBP -- by Chiarlonzio (Edgerton).

Note: Chiarlonzio faced four batters in the 5th.

T -- 1:53.