Warriors ambush Trojans, 2-1
By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on March 28, 2013 1:48 PM
Youth-laden Eastern Wayne has shown flashes of promise at times this season.
Those moments of hope materialized into seven innings of fulfilled potential for the Warriors on Wednesday evening.
Eastern Wayne scored the go-ahead run on an error in the bottom of the fifth inning and hung on for a 2-1 victory over South Johnston in New Hope. The loss was the Trojans' first in Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference play.
The Warriors took an early lead in the bottom of the second inning on Zack Smith's RBI single.
South Johnston (8-3 overall, 5-1 ECC) threatened in the top of the third inning with runners on second and third base and two outs, but Eastern Wayne starting pitcher Jeremy Lancaster got Will Raynor to ground out to the end the inning. Lancaster surrendered one earned run on four hits with four strikeouts and three walks in 4 2/3 innings.
Raynor drew a bases-loaded walk in the top of the fifth inning as South Johnston tied the game at 1-1.
The Warriors' Tyler Huetter reached on a fielder's choice in the bottom of the fifth inning and scored the go-ahead run on a critical throwing error with two outs.
"They helped us there," Eastern Wayne head coach Jabo Fulghum said. "I told our kids we've been in every ballgame except one in the conference and that you have to play every game with the intention of leaving your heart on the field when you get through.
"That's all I can ask."
In his first pitching appearance of the season, Warriors' reliever Ryan Faucette worked out of jams in both the sixth and seventh innings and left the tying run at second base each time. Faucette recorded back-to-back strikeouts of Ryan Perez and Raynor to end the ballgame. The senior right-hander earned the win on the mound with 2 1/3 innings of one-hit, shutout relief with three strikeouts and a walk.
Eastern Wayne (4-7) improved to 3-4 in ECC play and moved into fourth place in the league while keeping its state playoff hopes alive. The Warriors face Heritage on Friday night at D.H. Conley in the Pitt County Classic.
"Our guys should know they can play with anybody in the conference if you beat the top team," Fulghum said. "You've got to be ready every time you walk out on the field in conference play. We've got four conference games at home in the second half versus four away in the first half. I'm hoping that will help us."
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