05/27/13 — Pate, Burroughs, Fitzpatrick cop ECC's top honor in respective sport

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Pate, Burroughs, Fitzpatrick cop ECC's top honor in respective sport

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on May 27, 2013 1:47 PM

They each helped lead their respective team to a conference championship this past spring.

And each received a well-deserved reward.

Eastern Wayne senior Chaz Fitzpatrick "three-peated" as the Class 3-A Eastern Carolina Conference men's tennis player-of-the-year. Charles B. Aycock junior Meredith Burroughs emerged the ECC softball POY for the second straight season, while the Golden Falcons' Adam Pate claimed the ECC baseball POY award.

Fitzpatrick logged 133 career wins in singles and doubles combined for the Warriors, who successfully defended their regular-season title. He surrendered just 13 games in singles and doubles action, and reached the quarterfinal round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association individual tournament.

"Chaz had a great senior year," EW head coach Craig Hassell said. "He has been our leader for all four years at the number one singles and doubles position. A player and student of his caliber has been a fine representative of Eastern Wayne athletics and academics, as well as one of the top 3-A high school players in eastern North Carolina over the past four years."

Hassell was named the ECC coach-of-the-year.

Burroughs took on a different role for the Golden Falcons.

Instead of playing first base, she moved into the pitcher's circle and helped Aycock earn a share of its 10th ECC regular-season title in program history. The Golden Falcons fell in the second round of the NCHSAA playoffs and concluded the season with 14 wins despite losing nearly their entire infield from graduation in 2012.

"(Meredith's) role this year was to be our ace on the mound," CBA assistant coach Emily Jordan said. "She took this role and did her very best. Most people her age would have folded under the pressure, but Meredith rose to the occasion and embraced the challenge."

Pate, who signed with North Carolina, helped Aycock complete the "ECC sweep" for just the second time in program history. The Golden Falcons emerged both the regular-season and tournament champions for the first time since 2007, and have claimed five regular-season crowns overall since 2006.

"Adam is very deserving of this honor," CBA head coach Charles Davis said. "He is the ultimate student-athlete and teammate. He plays the game the right way and sets a good example for other players."

Davis shared the ECC coach-of-the-year award with Triton's Joey Miriello.