05/05/12 — Spring Creek locks up No. 2 seed from Carolina Conference

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Spring Creek locks up No. 2 seed from Carolina Conference

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on May 5, 2012 11:15 PM

CALYPSO -- Spring Creek swept the regular-season series from North Duplin with a 9-2 victory on Friday night in the Carolina 1-A Conference finale for both teams.

The Gators locked up the No. 2 seed and a home game in the N.C. High School Athletic Association playoffs, which begin May 11. The Rebels dropped to the No. 3 seed and will travel in the opening round.

"This was a big win for our guys," Spring Creek head coach Heath Whitfield said. "I was getting a little nervous there in about the fourth inning, but we had one big inning and that was enough."

North Duplin (14-6 overall, 6-4 CC) took a 2-0 lead in the third inning.

Ced Kornegay reached on an error and immediately scored when Breyon Johnson lined a double down the left-field line. Johnson later scored on James Kornegay's sacrifice fly.

Spring Creek (15-7, 8-2) scored one run in the fourth inning and grabbed the lead with three runs in the fifth.

Zach Harrell drew a one-out walk, advanced on a groundout and scored on Chris Nichols' single. A Rebel error allowed Nichols to cross the plate on Chad Spurgeon's base hit. Corey Howell plated Spurgeon to put the Gators ahead 4-2.

Whitfield's team kept rolling in the sixth inning as seven consecutive batters reached base with no outs. Logan Miller was awarded first for catcher's interference and Trey Hammonds was hit by a pitch. Luke Miller and Harrell each drew a walk, and forced in a run.

Duane Gurganus was hit by a pitch and Nichols walked, which led to two more runs. Spurgeon capped the five-run outburst with a two-run single that put the game out of reach.

"We had one bad inning that really killed us," North Duplin head coach James Hobbs said. "We hadn't done that all season, as far as walking guys, but tonight we did it at a bad time."

Logan Miller pitched 2 2/3 innings of relief to get the win on the pitcher's mound for the Gators. Ryan Wolfe suffered the loss for the Rebels.