06/09/12 — All-Area Baseball: Aycock's Davis named Coach of the Year

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All-Area Baseball: Aycock's Davis named Coach of the Year

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on June 9, 2012 11:12 PM

From unstoppable to stagnant and back to unstoppable in one season is how the 2012 campaign played out for the Charles B. Aycock baseball team.

The roller-coaster ride ended with a surprising runner-up finish in the N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 3-A state championship series

The engineer of the Golden Falcons' playoff run, long-tenured head coach Charles Davis, enjoyed every twist and turn. For his efforts, Davis has been voted the 2012 News-Argus All-Area Baseball Coach-of-the-Year.

"I am very humbled and very honored," Davis said. "Obviously, there are a lot of people who made this season possible and I would not have gotten very far without my assistant coaches and our players."

Davis had never seen a year like this one.

The Golden Falcons opened the season 5-0 in their first five games before trouble began to show. Six losses in the next 10 outings left Davis and his coaching staff searching for answers following the Pitt County Classic in early April.

"One thing that I hope I have instilled in this program over the past 22 years is a sense of team pride," Davis said. "I talked to my seniors and I think that those guys were the catalyst as far as getting our team back on track."

C.B. Aycock won its final five regular-season games and entered the Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference tournament as a potential dark horse to take home the title. All of that hope came crashing down in a 7-0 loss to South Johnston on the opening night of the tourney.

The fourth-seeded Golden Falcons had gone from potential bracket buster to possibly missing the state playoffs in a single night.

"That was a really hard loss to swallow," Davis said. "It felt like we were putting it all together as far as pitching, defense and timely hitting, but for that one night we just didn't have it."

South Johnston lost in the tournament semifinals and essentially locked C.B. Aycock into the fourth playoff spot from the ECC. The Golden Falcons made the most of their opportunity.

Behind stellar pitching from Collin DuBose, Bryant Stafford and Adam Pate the Golden Falcons downed three No. 1 seeds -- D.H. Conley, Jacksonville and Currituck County -- in their first three playoff games. A victory over West Brunswick moved the team into the eastern regional finals against Eastern Alamance.

C.B. Aycock won the best-of-three series 2-1 and earned a trip to Five County Stadium in Zebulon. Weddington was waiting and the Warriors ended the Golden Falcons' unlikely run with consecutive victories.

"I hope that the experience of playing for a state title will motivate our guys next year," Davis said. "We were so close, I think having that experience will definitely help our young guys going forward."

C.B. Aycock finished the season 21-11 overall.