05/12/12 — Eastern Wayne baseball defeats West Craven

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Eastern Wayne baseball defeats West Craven

By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on May 12, 2012 11:56 PM

Good things come to those who wait.

Patience at the plate paid off for Eastern Wayne on Friday evening.

Wes Capps drew a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the seventh inning to score Hunter Barnett for the game-winning run in a 3-2 victory over West Craven in the first round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association 3-A state baseball playoffs.

The Warriors entertain Currituck on Tuesday night in the second round.

Logan Nobles led off the ballgame with a solo home run to left field to give the Eagles an early 1-0 lead.

West Craven starting pitcher Michael Coombs held Eastern Wayne (16-7 overall) to just two hits through the first three innings and at one point struck out seven consecutive batters. Nolan James' solo home run in the bottom of the fourth inning tied the game at 1-1.

"The Coombs kid, his offspeed stuff was down and we were chasing," Warriors' head coach Jabo Fulghum said. "I'll give him credit, he stayed around the plate and we helped him out a lot early. He threw a lot of breaking pitches in fastball counts. Nolan got a good fastball and drove it. I was proud of him for staying back and getting a good pitch."

Barnett's solo home run to right field in the home half of the fifth inning put Eastern Wayne in front 2-1. He finished with three hits.

"He kept us off-balance early," Barnett said of Coombs. "He finally left one up and I turned on it. It surprised me. I didn't think it was going to go out, but it did."

The Eagles failed to score with the tying run on base in both the fifth and sixth innings. With West Craven down to its final out in the top of the seventh inning, Nobles singled to right field. Jake Brinson tied the game at 2-2 with his RBI double.

Barnett retired Jackson Parker to end the inning. The senior left-hander surrendered two earned runs on six hits with two walks and eight strikeouts to earn the win.

"I just knew if we could get out of that inning we could go back in, and score a run and let the bats do the rest," Barnett said.

Barnett drew a one-out walk in the bottom of the seventh inning from Eagles' reliever Justin Taylor. Taylor walked Ryan Faucette and James to load the bases before Capps drew the game-winning walk on a 3-2 pitch.

"There was a lot going on and I didn't want to end the night with a bad at-bat," Capps said. "When the count got to 3-2, the next pitch had to be a dream and he threw it low and I took my base. We battled hard and came back and won the ballgame.

"It was a good night and we're doing it for Jake (May)."