Falcons flying high
By Rob Craig
Published in Sports on April 29, 2007 2:01 AM
PIKEVILLE -- Charles B. Aycock's one conference loss has become nothing more than a distant memory.
Since a stunning loss at Kinston in the Golden Falcons' second Eastern Carolina Conference game of 2007, Aycock put together eight straight wins to cap the regular season, including Friday's 9-1 victory over Southern Wayne on senior night.
"I'm tickled to death," said Aycock coach Charles Davis. "We've won eight straight conference games, and I'm proud of the guys for that."
Being senior night, it was only fitting that a key senior made the plays on the mound and at the plate.
Pitcher Garrett Davis -- who will become a Tar Heel next season at the University of North Carolina -- finished the regular season in style.
The senior right-hander improved his record to 6-1 this year by giving up one unearned run in 51/3 innings while walking three and striking out eight.
"Garrett labored through," said coach Davis. "He got a little tired on a hot, muggy night. It was the first time this year he's pitched on a night like this."
Davis also helped his own cause by going 2-for-4 with the bat including a double and three RBIs.
Southern Wayne was able to get runners on against Davis, but again lacked the key hit to drive the runners home.
In all, the Saints would leave seven runners stranded in scoring position.
"We've been playing good baseball the last five games," said Southern Wayne coach Trae McKee. "We had opportunities to score, but we just didn't get the job done. Tonight, I thought we were thinking too much and not reacting.
"We've just got to get back to reacting at the plate. When you start thinking you get frozen at the plate."
Aycock had no such problems getting its runners home.
The Golden Falcons were already leading 3-0 heading into the bottom of the fifth against Southern Wayne starter Sterling Grice when they looked to expand upon the lead.
With two on and no one out, Bradley Taylor crushed a Grice pitch to center. Southern Wayne center fielder Tyler Edwards got a good jump on the ball and reached over the fence to bring back the near three-run homer.
"(Tyler's) done a great job in center field and made some big time plays for us over the course of the year," said McKee. "He made a great read on the ball and did what we've taught him."
The two runners would eventually come home on Zack Wright's double to put Aycock ahead 5-0.
An inning later, the Golden Falcons would chase Grice from the game and blow it open.
Back-to-back hits by Taylor and Davis drove home four runs to give the Golden Falcons a 9-1 cushion.
Grice gave up eight runs (six earned) in 52/3 innings while walking two and striking out three.
"We got hits when we needed them," said coach Davis. "Up and down the lineup, we scored when we had to."
Reliever Jay Rose then finished off the Saints by pitching 12/3 scoreless innings while striking out three.
"Jay Rose came in and got a couple of big strikeouts for us and that was key because Southern Wayne does not quit," said coach Davis.
Southern Wayne completes the regular season with an 11-12 overall record and 5-5 in the ECC.
The victory gives the 10 Aycock seniors their 20th win of the season (20-3 overall) and improves their ECC record to 9-1.
"This is a great group of guys," said a proud coach Davis of his senior class. "When they do leave, it's going to be a sad time simply because they're good people. They're good in the school and in the community.
"A lot of those guys have been with me for three years. They all hold a special place in my heart."
So. Wayne 000 001 0 -- 1 3 2
C.B. Aycock 021 024 x -- 9 11 4
Leading hitters -- Southern Wayne -- Tyler Edwards 1-3, 2B. C.B. Aycock -- Garrett Davis 2-4, 2B, 4 RBIs; Evan Medford 2-3, R; Bradley Taylor 1-3, 2 RBIs, R; Zack Wright 1-3, 2B, 2 RBIs; Connor Narron 1-2, 2B, RBI, R; Joseph Toler 1-3, 2B, R.
LOB -- Southern Wayne 8, C.B. Aycock 4. SB -- Wiggins, Massey. CS -- Price.
IP H R ER BB SO
Grice (L) 52/3 9 8 6 2 3
Douglas 1/3 1 1 1 0 1
Davis (W, 6-1) 51/3 3 1 0 3 8
Rose 12/3 0 0 0 0 3
WP -- Davis 2, Rose.
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