Ahoskie stops Windsor

Published 11:43 am Monday, June 25, 2012

WINDSOR – Ahoskie Post 102 and Windsor Post 37’s junior American Legion baseball teams settled first place Wednesday night.

And the victor is: Ahoskie.

Jumping out to an early 4-0 lead and never looking back, Ahoskie (8-6, 6-2, conference) claimed the top spot with a 13-8 win. Windsor (8-3, 4-3, conference) loaded the bases three times in the seven-inning affair, but never could cash in.

Gates County High lefty hurler Stephen Umphlett got the win on the mound for Post 102; going four solid innings and giving up three runs on four hits while striking out five and walking just as many.

He got relief help from Ackerman Grace and Eric Ortiz.

At the dish, Brandon Terry went 3-for 5, scoring twice and driving in three runs on two of Ahoskie’s four extra-base hits.

Ryan Weaver also drove in a trio of runs going 2-for-5 with a run scored while slamming a double.

For Windsor, Patrick Castelloe was 2-for-3 and had three runs-batted-in.

“We came out with a good approach to start the game,” said Ahoskie coach Brandon Matthews. “We knew if we exercised ‘plate discipline’ we would have pretty good at-bats.”

“We loaded the bases in three of the last four innings,” said disappointed Windsor coach, Bobby Harmon. “But we just couldn’t drive runs in.”

Southpaw Austin Lee absorbed the loss on the hill for Windsor, and he was in trouble early: hitting the first batter, and then walking the next one. The third batter, Ortiz, reached on an error allowing the first Ahoskie run to score.

Reynolds got the first hit of the game, a double to the wall in centerfield that plated two more. He would later steal third and score on Austin Hurdle’s base hit for a 4-0 lead after just a half-inning of play.

Windsor came back in their half of the first to score their first run when Alex Harmon got a two-out single to left and came home when the next batter, Castelloe, doubled into the gap in right-center.

Ahoskie got their fifth run in the top of the second. Bryan Merritt drew a two-out base-on-balls, reached second on an errant Windsor pick-off attempt, and came home on a double by Ortiz to left field.

It looked like it might be a short night when Ahoskie pushed across four more runs in the top of the third. After a sacrifice bunt put two runners in scoring position, the lead runner, Grace, came home when Windsor balked.

Three more runs came home later when Weaver smacked a bases-loaded double to the wall in center field and the game was dangerously close to being over ahead of time with Ahoskie having a 9-1 lead.

However, back came Windsor with a pair of runs in their half of the third, only one of them earned. Matthew Weaver, who had walked, scored on a wild pitch and Lee drove in Harmon with a sacrifice fly to make it 9-3.

After both teams made pitching changes, Windsor outscored Ahoskie 5-4 over the final three innings; but Post 37 had to have been haunted with 11 men left on base over that same period.

“We left a small village on the base paths, but give them credit because I thought they hit the ball great,” joked Harmon.

“Our pitching wasn’t the best, but we came in with an offensive game plan, and we stuck to it, so hard work pays off,” Matthews added.

The two teams will face each other twice more next week. Ahoskie hosts a game at Hertford County High field on Monday, and both clubs are back in Windsor at BHS field the next night. First pitch for both games will be 7 p.m.