05/15/10 — Hunt eliminates Aycock from 3-A baseball playoffs

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Hunt eliminates Aycock from 3-A baseball playoffs

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on May 15, 2010 11:07 PM

WILSON -- The premonition came true, but not the desired outcome.

Charles Davis expected one timely hit could determine the difference between Charles B. Aycock either advancing or packing up the equipment in the N.C. High School Athletic Association 3-A baseball playoffs.

Unfortunately, the latter occurred.

Senior Cody Britt delivered the game-winning hit in the fifth inning, and Wilson Hunt upended the Golden Falcons 2-1 on Friday evening. Aycock (22-5 overall) suffered its third postseason defeat in its last four outings since capturing the state championship in 2007.

"The ball just didn't bounce our way tonight," said Davis. "Our hitters, I thought, had very good at-bats and sometimes we didn't have anything to show for it."

Hunt turned two back-breaking double plays.

Golden Falcons senior Jordan Quinn laced a 1-0 fastball into the right center-field gap in the fourth inning, but Jacob Page tracked it down. Jonathan Taylor rounded second base when Page caught the ball and threw to first baseman Ches Lamm to complete the twin killing.

In the sixth, Aycock's Adron Hollowell rapped a hard grounder to second baseman Cody Britt. The 4-6-3 double play squelched another potential scoring opportunity.

"Quinn hits the ball in the gap and Jon gets a great read on it in that situation, the ball just happens to come back to the guy ... nothing we can do," said Davis. "Adron hits the ball right on the nose and the second baseman makes a great play. Hat's off to Hunt because they played well."

Aycock tried one last time in the seventh.

Ruffin slapped a first-pitch offering from Zack Lee into right field and moved into scoring position on Taylor's sacrifice bunt. Quinn grounded out and Warrior hurler Zack Lee eliminated the Golden Falcons with a game-ending strikeout.

A right-hander, Lee scattered four hits and logged four strikeouts in a complete-game effort. Ruffin provided the Golden Falcons' lone run -- a first-inning sacrifice fly that scored Tyler Farmer, who led off the game with a single.

Hunt (21-4) tied the game at 1-1 on Kyle Pittman's two-strike, two-out single during its first at-bat. Aycock right-hander Bryant Stafford recorded 1-2-3 innings in the second and fourth, and escaped trouble in the third.

Stafford issued a lead-off walk to Avery Harper to start the Warriors' decisive, fifth-inning rally. Parker Lamm's sacrifice bunt moved Harper into scoring position.

One out later, Britt doubled home Harper for the 2-1 lead.

"It played out just like I thought it was going to play out that whoever got the timely hit at the key time would win the ballgame," said Davis.

Stafford threw 110 pitches, including 69 strikes, and posted five strikeouts in five-plus innings. The Warriors managed just five hits.

"That kid is a battler and pitch count doesn't bother him," said Davis. "He threw the ball well. I'm glad I've got him for two more years, I really am."