05/23/11 — Logan Wicks comeback

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Logan Wicks comeback

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on May 23, 2011 3:32 PM

Three weeks ago there were a lot of questions surrounding the Eastern Wayne baseball team as it prepared for the Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference tournament.

Questions about injuries, leadership and most importantly, pitching.

As the Warriors prepare for the sectional finals in the N.C. High School Athletic Association 3-A playoffs on Tuesday night, the team has began to get some answers.

Logan Wicks has returned from a back injury that he suffered while pitching in the Pitt County Spring Invitational over Easter break. The right-hander has solidified the Eastern Wayne pitching rotation by providing quality innings in big spots during the postseason.

No innings were bigger than the Warriors' 6-2 win over D.H. Conley on Friday night.

"I can not tell you how huge it was for our team for Logan to come out and throw the ball well tonight," said Eastern Wayne head coach Jabo Fulghum. "He was able to locate his changeup, and he got his curveball over consistently and kept guys off balance."

Wicks lasted six innings against the Vikings and only allowed one earned run. Zack Mozingo, the mainstay in the Warriors' rotation throughout the season, entered the game and pitched a perfect seventh inning.

"I feel like I am back to 100 percent after tonight," said Wicks. "I was able to throw all of my pitches without any pain and I was able to keep the ball down."

That's a small accomplishment for a hurler who was described as "doubtful" by Fulghum during the conference tournament and was unsure of his status for the playoffs. Paired with Mozingo and reliever Nolan James, Wicks and his Eastern Wayne teammates shut down two quality opponents, including 2010 eastern champ Wilson Hunt, in a three-day span.

Facing another high-scoring team, North Lenoir, Fulghum has a full compliment of arms at his disposal Tuesday. That includes Wicks, who noted that he would be ready if needed after Friday's game.

"I am going to be ready to go whenever coach calls on me," said Wicks. "I have confidence that when I come into the game I am going to do well. (Catcher) Jake May has a lot to do with that because he has been really good behind the plate for us, and Coach has used our pitchers in ways that we all have been effective."