06/27/13 — Wayne County Post 11 drops road game against Pitt County 39

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Wayne County Post 11 drops road game against Pitt County 39

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

GREENVILLE -- Wayne County Post 11 hopes this worrisome late-season slump ends soon.

Or it could miss the playoffs.

Jarrett Ozimek and Blake Allen combined for a three-hitter and Pitt County Post 39 handed Wayne County a disheartening 9-0 defeat at Lewis Field inside Clark-LeClair Stadium on Wednesday evening.

The loss dropped Post 11 into a third-place tie with surprising Windsor. The top four teams advance to the Area I East tournament.

"I think we kind of had the mentality of just showing up and that was going to be good enough," said Wayne County head coach Jason Sherrer, whose team is 1-3 in its last four division outings.

"Instead of coming out and putting it on somebody, making them make some plays and throw some pitches, we kind of expected to roll out and be in the groove. I was just disappointed in the lack of intensity and effort today."

The groove certainly wasn't there.

Wayne County (13-5 overall, 5-4 East) matched its season low for hits (3) and endured its third consecutive loss against Post 39. Post 11 batters worked Ozimek to just four full counts, which resulted in two walks and two harmless fly balls, in 27 plate appearances.

Garrett Joyner, Ryan Faucette and Justin Barbour each had one hit in Wayne County's first road setback of the year. The soft-throwing Ozimek tossed eight innings and quietly retired 12 of the final 13 batters he faced.

Allen induced a game-ending double play to close out the ninth.

"We're still taking too many strikes and swinging at balls," lamented Sherrer of his team's wasted at-bats.

Pitt County (5-5, 5-5) seized command during a two-inning stretch.

Back-to-back wild pitches led to Post 39's first two runs and Kyle Cross (3-for-5, three RBI) stroked a back-breaking double to deep right-center field in the third inning. Cross' extra-base knock chased Post 11 starter Jackson Hayes from the mound.

Tyler Ables, the No. 9 batter in the lineup, sparked a fourth-inning uprising with a two-out single against Wayne County reliever Josh Dixon. Four batters and three singles later, Pitt County's advantage swelled to 7-0.

Post 39 added single runs in the seventh and eighth innings, and ended the night with 16 hits. All nine runs were earned.

Wayne County entertains league-leading Rocky Mount today, plays host to Post 39 on Saturday and travels to Windsor for a doubleheader on Sunday. Two games separate six teams which are jockeying for a postseason berth.

"The whole year we've been talking about leaving our postseason fate up to us," Sherrer said. "If we don't take care of the baseball and make adjustments at the plate, we're going to have a hard time making that goal happen."