03/11/09 — Falcons strand runners

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Falcons strand runners

By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on March 11, 2009 1:46 PM

PIKEVILLE -- Cynthia Burroughs had to wonder what else she could do to get a win.

The Charles B. Aycock hurler recorded 10 strikeouts, allowed two runs (one earned) and helped her cause offensively with an RBI double.

But it wasn't enough.

Perennial powerhouse D.H. Conley used timely hitting, solid pitching and turned key defensive plays in a 2-1, non-conference victory Tuesday evening on the Golden Falcons' diamond.

Brianna Richie gave the Vikings a 1-0 lead on a first-inning, RBI single.

Anna Sullivan was hit by a pitch, while Rachel Jordan and Autumn Pittman drew back-to-back walks in Aycock's second inning. Conley pitcher Heather Whitley induced two flyouts and a strikeout to wiggle out of the bases-loaded jam.

Whitley got in trouble again in the third.

Torie Benton and Burroughs each drew a walk. Whitley coerced the Golden Falcons into back-to-back groundouts to end the inning. Aycock stranded five runners on base in the first three innings.

"When you've got the bases loaded with no outs, you've got to put the ball in play on the ground somewhere and make something happen," said second-year Golden Falcons head coach Brad Matthews. "We've got to execute better than we did tonight. I honestly think D.H. Conley outhustled us."

The Vikings manufactured an insurance run in the fourth inning and got some help from an Aycock error. Kaitlyn Anderson reached on a bunt single and advanced to second base on Holly Thorton's sacrifice bunt.

Burroughs was nearly out of the inning on Juliann Shirley's two-out ground ball to third base. But Jordan's throw to Brooke Bell at first sailed high allowing Anderson to score from second.

The Golden Falcons (4-1 overall) were held without a hit until Bell lined a one-out single to right in the bottom of the fifth. Aycock pulled to within 2-1 on Burroughs' two-out RBI double that scored Bell. Burroughs advanced to third on a throw to the plate in an attempt to throw out Bell.

Conley quickly extinguished the Golden Falcons' rally as Anderson made a diving catch in foul territory down the right field line on a fly ball off Sullivan's bat.

Burroughs scattered four hits, walked three and recorded at least one strikeout in each of the seven innings.

"She did an outstanding job," said Matthews. "She hit her spots and there wasn't anything else she could have done. She did her part and she had the RBI base hit."

Aycock visits Greene Central at 5 p.m. on Friday.