03/19/08 — Hollowell relaxes after first inning

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Hollowell relaxes after first inning

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on March 19, 2008 1:49 PM

Not many pitchers survive a 31-pitch inning.

Adron Hollowell did ... once he got rid of the jitters.

The Eastern Wayne right-hander yielded three first-inning runs on four hits to Wilson Beddingfield on Tuesday afternoon. The sophomore struggled with his location and threw just about every pitch up in the strike zone.

"I didn't hit my spots at all ... plain and simple," said Hollowell.

After the first-inning fiasco, Hollowell found his groove. He retired 11 of the final 14 batters he faced as the Warriors hammered the Bruins, 14-3, in the Class 3-A Eastern Carolina Conference affair. Eastern Wayne (5-4 overall, 2-1 ECC) triumphed for the third time in its last four outings, while Beddingfield exited 0-9 in all games this season.

Hollowell made his first varsity appearance in Saturday's road win at Greene Central. He threw the final two innings and head coach Jabo Fulghum elected to start him against the Bruins.

Fulghum never wavered about pulling the youngster after the disastrous beginning.

"He's pitched very well for the JV team this year and beaten some quality teams," said Fulghum. "Anybody can throw when you've got a big lead, but you have to find a way when you get behind. He learned how to battle and make an adjustment today.

"That was important."

Beddingfield (0-3 ECC) put five additional runners aboard after the first inning, but left each one stranded at either first or second base. Hollowell notched seven of his career-best 10 strikeouts during the final four innings and permitted just two base hits.

Hollowell finished with a six-hitter on 94 pitches, including 65 strikes.

"I just settled in ... wasn't so hard on myself," said Hollowell. "I was getting movement on my two-seamer and the change-up started dropping."

Trailing 3-1, Eastern Wayne erupted for four second-inning runs. Jose Ponce and Jeff Hill (2-for-2) each reached on a single, and scored on a throwing error and passed ball, respectively. Colton Fulghum and Walker Gourley each drew a one-out walk, and Fulghum scored on Nolan Lancaster's second of three doubles on the day.

John Wooten concluded the scoring with an RBI groundout.

The Bruins, who have lost all three ECC games this season by the mercy rule, crumbled defensively in the fourth inning. The Warriors transformed five errors, three hits, four walks and three stolen bases into nine runs.

Lancaster (3-for-3, 3 RBI) and Wooten (2-4, 4 RBI) led the charge as Eastern Wayne sent 13 batters to the plate.

"After the first inning, we stopped hitting lazy fly balls and started hitting the ball a little bit," said coach Fulghum. "They booted a couple like we did, but we hit the ball hard on the ground and good things happened."

Eastern Wayne concludes its pre-Easter schedule Thursday at county archrival Charles B. Aycock. First pitch is 5 p.m. at Pikeville.