JV baseball finds new life

Published 12:54 pm Tuesday, April 18, 2023

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By Brian Pitts

Enterprise Record

Davie’s JV baseball team dealt West Forsyth a mercy-rule drubbing in Clemmons. You couldn’t possibly have seen that coming. Just two days earlier, the Titans run-ruled the War Eagles, who were amidst a woeful stretch that saw their record tumble to 2-9.

So go figure: After Davie was outscored 65-16 during an eight-game losing streak, it responded with wins over Mooresville and West and a team that appeared left for dead on April 11 had found new life the following two days.

WF 11, Davie 1

The War Eagles arrived in Clemmons on April 11 with a seven-game slump, and things only got worse. They were outhit 12-1, made three errors and lost in six innings.

Davie was dominated by West sophomore pitcher Garrett Secrist, who walked none and faced two batters over the minimum (20). Corbin Angus went 1 for 2 with a run scored, Davie’s only hit coming in the third. Davie’s only other baserunner was Hunter Potts, who reached on an error in the third.

But Secrist retired the last 10 batters and West broke the game open in the sixth, scoring seven runs after starting the inning with a 4-1 lead.

Davie 1, Mooresville 0

Davie’s offense was dormant yet again – it finished with two or fewer runs for the seventh straight game – but it received a much-needed jolt from four pitchers in a home nonconference game on April 12.

Coston Colamarino, Eli Webber, Larson Stem and Alexander Shinsky combined on a four-hitter as Davie picked up its first win since 10-8 at East Surry on March 8.

“You saw a little grit and saw guys stepping up,” varsity coach Joey Anderson said.

After leaving the bases loaded in the first and stranding two runners in the third, the War Eagles broke through in the fourth. After Webber walked and courtesy-runner Braxton Hunter stole second, Potts delivered an RBI single.

Davie missed a chance to add insurance in the sixth. With Ryan Williams on third and Webber on second with one out, the next two batters were retired as the score remained 1-0.

The story was Potts’ clutch hit and Davie’s pitching/defense. Colamarino left two Blue Devils on base in the second. Webber faced a bases-loaded threat from Mooresville in the fourth, then induced a groundout to shortstop Carson Queen. A Blue Devil singled in the sixth, but that runner was cut down trying to steal by catcher Potts.

Mooresville had the tying run at second in the seventh, but back-to-back grounders to Queen ended Davie’s home struggles. (It was 0-4 at home before this.)

“I tried to keep Queen at second base because him and Coy (James, the varsity shortstop) are the same age,” Anderson said. “But Queen’s glove is amazing. He works real hard at it every single day, so we moved him to short after spring break. He struggled a little bit the first game (at West), but he’s working hard at it. Ross (Hoffner) has worked with him on his arm path.”

Colamarino struck out five in 3.2 innings. Webber faced the minimum in 1.1 innings. Stem faced four batters in one inning of work. And Shinsky retired three of four batters in his one inning on the mound.

Colamarino was the top offensive player by going 2 for 2. Davie got one hit from Potts (1-4), Stem (1-2, two steals), Nate Barr (1-2, walk), Williams (1-1), Hunter Daywalt (1-1) and Webber (1-1).

Davie 12, WF 2

The tables completely turned when Davie hosted West Forsyth on April 13. Two days after losing to West by 10, Davie whipped West in five innings.

After managing just nine runs across seven games, the offense enjoyed an explosion. Webber (single) and Daywalt (two-run double) had hits during a five-run second, a rally that was aided by three walks and an error. Williams, Potts, Stem and Barr had hits in the fifth, when the margin swelled from 7-2 to 12-2.

Stem (3-4, two RBIs) and Barr (2-2, two walks) led the way as Davie collected 11 hits.

“Larson swung the bat well last year,” Anderson said. “He’s tweaked some things and he’s changed a few things trying to add a little more power. I think we’ve got him locked back in as far as being a line-drive hitter instead of being long through the zone.

“Nate’s bat is keeping him in the game. I put him with Davin (Whitaker, a senior) the other day because he kind of has that same swing that Davin had when he was a freshman. We’ve got Nate to where he’s a little wider and he’s been swinging the bat better. There’s some potential power there.”

Helping matters was Daywalt’s complete-game pitching. Although he allowed 10 hits in five innings, he escaped trouble when he needed to do so, walked one and fired 58 of 77 pitches for strikes.

“Daywalt threw a great game,” Anderson said. “That’s what we needed to see out of him today. He battled and worked his way out of (jams).”

Notes: Daywalt benefited from his error-free defense. … Getting one hit were Potts (1-2, two walks), Queen (1-3), Kason Stewart (1-1, two RBIs, two walks), Webber (1-3), Daywalt (1-2, double, two RBIs) and Williams (1-3). … Colamarino had two RBIs. … Davie improved to 4-9 overall and 1-5 in the Central Piedmont Conference.