Belle's RBI double lifts Aycock past Bruins
By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on March 20, 2009 1:46 PM
PIKEVILLE -- Missed opportunities almost spelled disaster for defending Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference softball co-champion Charles B. Aycock on Thursday evening.
The Golden Falcons stranded 12 base runners, including eight in scoring position, and barely fended off Wilson Beddingfield 3-2. It was the conference opener for both teams.
"We couldn't get a hit with people on base," said C.B. Aycock head coach Brad Matthews. "I don't know if we were trying to hit the ball over the fence in those situations or what, but we hit way too many fly balls on the infield."
Locked in a scoreless tie, the Golden Falcons jumped on top in the third inning.
With one out, Cynthia Burroughs belted a fly ball to right field and raced around to third when the ball was misplayed. Anna Sullivan followed with her first home run of the season.
The Bruins answered quickly.
Nicole de la Rosa drew a lead-off walk in the top of the fourth inning and scored two batters later on Caitlin Jones' two-run blast over the center-field fence.
"I told my girls when we got the early lead that Beddingfield was not going to lay down," said Matthews. "They are too good of a team to just lay down and take a loss."
C.B. Aycock scratched across the eventual winning run in the bottom of the fourth inning.
Amber Baker drilled a single and was chased to second on Randi Tucker's base hit. Brooke Bell immediately followed with an RBI double and it appeared that the Golden Falcons were on their way to a big inning.
Jones settled down and recorded the final two outs of the frame.
"We work on situational stuff all the time in practice," said Bruins head coach Jeremy Howard. "We gambled a little bit and cut down some lead runners, and we were able to get out of a couple of jams."
Clinging to a 3-2 lead, Burroughs bared down in the pitcher's circle. The senior allowed a base runner in each of the Bruins final three at-bats but did not surrender a run.
Burroughs tossed a complete game to earn the win on the rubber. The hard-throwing ace struck out six and walked two.
"Cynthia did a very nice job tonight of making big pitches in critical situations," said Matthews. "I thought we played well defensively. We just didn't make the right adjustments at the plate."
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