Moss knocks Pack into new territory
By By KEVIN TRAVIS, Sports Editor
PIKEVILLE — As a light rain fell and the night grew darker and darker, Brittany Moss slowly stepped into the batter’s box. Moss hadn’t done much in her previous five at-bats, grounding out four times and striking out another.
However, the Washington Pam Pack’s designated hitter delivered in the clutch, driving in what proved to be the game-winner in Washington’s 3-0 win over Charles B. Aycock in Thursday’s 14-inning marathon. The win, coming in the second round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association 3-A state playoffs, vaulted the Pam Pack into the third round for the first time in school history.
Washington will look to take it a step farther when it meets today’s winner between Bertie (15-8) and D.H. Conley (19-5) in the third round. The Pam Pack will be at home Tuesday if Conley wins. If Bertie wins, the Pack will be on the road.
Washington met as a team at second base following the team’s win Tuesday. The Pack gathered together at third base following Thursday night’s victory. Daniel said his team will look to meet at home plate following a victory in the next round.
Charity Watson was her brilliant self on the mound for Washington (17-4), the second seed from the Coastal Conference. The junior scattered three hits and fanned 24 Falcons (20-5), the Eastern Carolina Conference top seed, along the way.
Watson is no stranger to pitching in long contests, or striking out batters. She fanned 37 in a 1-0 win over Havelock in 19 innings on May 8, 2006. Watson also struck out 33 in a 2-1 nod over D.H. Conley in 15 innings on April 13, 2006.
Watson helped get the Pam Pack rolling in the top of the 14th inning with an infield single off Aycock starter Emily Jordan. Falcon shortstop Cara Frederick couldn’t quite come up with Watson’s grounder.
Caroline Smith was inserted as a pinch runner.
Stacey Mayer reached on one of four Aycock errors, putting runners at first and second for the Pack. Davey Ann Burbage followed with a perfectly placed sac bunt that moved the runners across.
Moss then stepped to the plate and rifled a single into right that easily scored Smith for a 1-0 lead. After Lauren Allen reached on a fielder’s choice, Kristi Wood laced a single into left that plated Moss for a 2-0 advantage. Marissa Fucito drew a walk to load the bases. Kayla Spain then reached on Aycock’s fourth error, which allowed Allen to score for a 3-0 lead.
Daniel said it was good to see some unsung stars shine in the win.
Watson beaned Jordan to start the bottom of the 14th, but retired the next three batters to end the three-and-one-half-hour contest.
Both teams had their chances to score earlier in the game. Aycock’s best opportunity came in the seventh when the Falcons loaded the bases with one out. However, Watson fanned the next two batters to send the game into extra innings.
The Falcons also got a runner to third in the ninth.
Washington stranded a runner at third base in the fourth, seventh and 11th innings.
NCHSAA 3A Playoffs
Washington 000 000 000 000 03 — 3 6 1
C.B. Aycock 000 000 000 000 00 — 0 3 4
WP: Charity Watson; LP: Emily Jordan
Hitters: W — Charity Watson 2-4, Kristi Wood 2-6 (RBI), Marissa Fucito 1-3, Brittany Moss 1-6 (RBI); CBA — Emily Jordan 1-3, Stevie Savage 1-5, Torrie Benton 1-6.