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Rampants roll past Eastern Wayne


Mitchell Thomas
The Daily Reflector

Friday, March 22, 2019

After a shaky start, the J.H. Rose Rampants baseball team put together 10 runs in two innings to put away Eastern Wayne Friday night in Greenville, 11-1.

Despite only collecting seven hits as a team, the Rampants drew 10 walks on the evening and put the pressure on the Warriors with their aggressive baserunning that resulted in five errors for the Eastern Wayne defense.

In the third inning, the Rampants had every player in the lineup step up to the plate. Sophomore Ryker Galaska put down a perfect suicide squeeze past the pitcher and opened things up. Galaska finished 2-for-3 with a double, three RBIs and two runs.

“It gets us pumped up.” Galaska said about his team scoring 10 runs in two innings. “We have an early game tomorrow and we need to carry this energy on to it.”

Rose's Shane Rademacher threw a complete game, and after allowing five early hits, he sat down the last nine consecutive batters, striking out five Warriors. Rademacher also went 2-for-3 with two singles, an RBI and a run scored.

“I was hitting my spots, and they were swinging and missing.” Rademacher said. “I was getting some easy ground balls and pop flies, just hitting it to good places and my teammates made plays.”

The Rampants closed the game out in the fifth inning, when Junior outfielder Marcus Wilkins pinch hit, looping in a single to push across teammate Evan Gaddy and scoring the walk-off run for Rose.

“We ran the bases very good as we have been,” Rose head coach Ronald Vincent explained. “But I was very impressed with Shane Rademacher. He threw well, competed, threw strikes and got his breaking ball over really good today.”

Rose (8-2) will have an early bounce back as the Rampants take on Cardinal Gibbons (3-3) today at 10:30 A.M. At Fleming stadium in Wilson.


Ayden-Grifton 14, Kinston 0, 5 inn.

Ayden-Grifton baseball has begun the season at the top of the Eastern Carolina 2-A standings, and the Chargers won easily on Friday night.

“We wanted to focus on what we can control,”Chargers head coach Corey Skinner said. “I thought we were mistake-free for the most part defensively. We got a lot of pitchers some work tonight and that’s going to help us down the road. Every conference game is going to be tough because each team has a lot of talent. Kinston played very well, but I think we started to execute at the plate and that got us going.”

Using a couple of errors from the Vikings, Ayden-Grifton plated its first two runs in the second inning.

The Chargers (7-4, 3-0 Eastern Carolina 2-A) added to their lead in the third inning by picking up four more runs to make it 6-0. Kinston (1-7, 0-3) was only able to manage one hit and made seven errors defensively.

Ayden-Grifton’s biggest inning was the top of the fourth, as the Chargers scored eight runs to put the game away. Kinston couldn’t manufacture an out, leading to more offense for A-G.

Senior Austin Jones finished 3-for-3 with three RBIs. Jackson Upchurch and Jordan Atkinson each went 2-for-3 with an RBI. Overall, nine different Chargers batters got a hit and five got multiple hits.

Five different players pitched an inning each for Ayden-Grifton. There was a lot of balance as the Chargers pitchers combined for 11 strikeouts. Skinner wanted to create different looks and get multiple players some work on the mound.

Ayden-Grifton will host North Lenoir on Tuesday.

“We just want to go 1-0 every night, especially in conference play,” Skinner added. “That approach is a big part of what we want to do in the future. It’s about taking things one game at a time and making adjustments from game to game.”

— Laieke Abebe

D.H. Conley 8, Southern Wayne 2

Chandler Baldree and Cam Jackson were perfect for Conley (9-1, 4-0) on Friday night, going a combined 9-for-9 at the plate.

Baldree went 4-for-4 with a double and three runs scored and Jackson was 5-for-5 with three RBIs, including a two-run home run in the seventh to help seal the victory. Josh McCarter also had a pair of hits and three RBIs.

Eason Warren picked up the win on the mound, striking out six, while Baldree threw the last three innings for the save for the Vikings, who take on West Johnson at Fleming Stadium today.


Ayden-Grifton 28, Kinston 0

The Ayden-Grifton softball team couldn’t be stopped on Friday. Gray Matthis’ team never had any trouble against the Vikings, getting 22 hits as a team. Seven different players had at least two hits for the Chargers.

While Ayden-Grifton (5-3, 2-1 Eastern Carolina 2-A) had control of the game early, Kinston (0-3, 0-2) was able to hang around for the first two innings. However, the Chargers were not going to be denied after a close loss to Washington earlier in the week.

“It’s good to get a win,” Matthis said. “I don’t like that the score ended up the way it did. Kinston has a really good outfield. When we played Washington, they had a pitcher who threw fast. (Kinston) had a pitcher who threw slower, so our batters had to adjust at the plate. I always respect (Kinston) because they hustle and play extremely hard.”

The Chargers’ big inning came in the top of the fourth when they scored 21 runs. Kinston had chances to end the inning multiple times, but Ayden-Grifton took advantage of some costly errors.

“Errors,” Kinston coach Shonda Hines said. “We just made a lot of errors and they’re always costly. If we can cut down on that, we’ll be fine going forward. It’s a little bit of an adjustment for most of my team because most of them played basketball as well. I just want to see my team consistently play a complete games. Being consistent on offense will help us become a better team.”

A-G pitcher Kim Gurkins didn’t allow a hit and picked up another win in the circle. She struck out nine Vikings batters and allowed one walk in four innings. Taylor Bowen and Mikayla Olejar each went 4-for-5 for Ayden-Grifton. Bowen also collected seven RBIs in an offensive onslaught from the Chargers.

Ayden-Grifton hosts North Lenoir in another conference matchup on Tuesday.

“This is a game where we wanted to work on adjustments,” Matthis added. “Staying focused on the little things can help us play good softball. We just have to make sure we’re doing the right things out there.”

— Laieke Abebe


Parrot Academy 5, Cape Fear 4

Parrott came back from 2-1 down at halftime to beat Cape Fear.

Alex Melk recorded her second hat trick of the season, while Gisell Cervantes added two goals. Megan Blair, Kaitlyn Iannace, Cervantes and Melk added assists. Ele Wooten made four saves to preserve the victory.


Humans of Greenville


Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

High Schools

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June 12, 2019

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