06/24/14 — Post 11 struggles early, dumps Duplin-Sampson Post 127

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Post 11 struggles early, dumps Duplin-Sampson Post 127

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on June 24, 2014 1:48 PM


CLINTON -- Wayne County Post 11 set the table during the first three innings.

It didn't feast until the fourth.

Garrett Joyner's two-RBI single spearheaded a seven-run uprising and Wayne County rolled to a 14-2, non-division victory over Duplin-Sampson Post 127 on Monday evening.

"It didn't look bad, but it didn't look good (early)," third-year Post 11 head coach Jason Sherrer said.

Wayne County (7-4-1 overall) hit into a first-inning double play and committed a pair of base-running mistakes that eliminated potential scoring opportunities.

The one-run deficit didn't last long, though.

Zack Smith, Chad Spurgeon and DJ Graham each drew a walk in the fourth against Tyler Potter -- the fourth Duplin-Sampson pitcher to see action on the bump.

Potter departed and Mitchell Thigpen yielded run-scoring base knocks to Allen Coor and Hank Smitherman. Thigpen lasted five batters and gave up the inning's final run on a wild pitch that scored Joyner.

Wayne County led 7-1.

Post 11 induced the mercy rule in the fifth inning and put the game away with a three-run seventh. Faucette emerged as the offensive leader with three hits and two RBI, while Smitherman and Joyner contributed two hits apiece.

Duplin-Sampson used nine pitchers in the game.

"I think that was their idea to 'Johnny Whole-staff' and it worked at the start, but we got a few walks, and then we came up with some big hits," said Sherrer, whose team collected nine total hits and batted 6 for 12 with runners in scoring position.

Wayne County pitcher Ben Rouse (1-1) earned his first career Legion win with a stellar six-inning performance. The right-hander scattered two hits, walked three and struck out four.

Rouse retired 10 consecutive batters during three-plus innings and turned a pivotal double play with Faucette. Post 127 infielder James Britt hit a sharp comebacker to the mound that Rouse caught, and he doubled up Kris Royal at second base to end the inning.

"Oh my gosh, that was awesome," Rouse said of the double play. "It woke me up, that's for sure. I'm glad Faucette was there (and) knowing my guys are always there for me is a big plus."

Rouse faced 25 batters during his 100-pitch outing and held Duplin-Sampson hitless with runners in scoring position. Post 127 stranded six runners against Rouse, including four at either second or third base.

"Me and Greg (Johnson) talked before the game about approaches on the mound," Rouse said. "I have found that I pitch better if I'm mad and he felt the same way. I stayed focused, didn't think about outside things ... zoned in on Kevin's mitt.

"I didn't try to show much emotion."

Wayne County claimed its third-straight mercy-rule victory over Duplin-Sampson and leads the all-time series 13-0.