Jackson Deals No-Hitter in FC Win

Fairfield Central’s Travius Williams belts one down the third base line Tuesday against Eau Claire. (Photo/Joe Seibles)

Fairfield Central’s Travius Williams belts one down the third base line Tuesday against Eau Claire. (Photo/Joe Seibles)

WINNSBORO – Mercy rule or no mercy rule, a goose egg in the opponent’s second column is still a goose egg. Tuesday night, Fairfield Central freshman pitcher Antonio Jackson was the Golden Goose.

Jackson struck out seven Shamrocks through five innings of mercy rule shortened play Tuesday night as the Griffins blanked Eau Claire 12-0 to open region play.

“He’s got a fastball and a curve. And he’s young,” Griffin head coach Scotty Dean said of Tuesday’s game-winner. “His curve is a good off-speed pitch and he locates his fastball pretty good, when he’s locating it.”

Jackson walked six Shamrock batters Tuesday, but located well enough to strike out seven and strand runners on the bases.

The Griffins mustered only four hits against Eau Claire, but three Shamrock errors and a plethora of walks aided Fairfield Central’s efforts.

Chris Boyd belted a 2 RBI double, and Brandon Adams’s double came with the bags juiced, also plating a pair. Stanley McManus went 1-for-3 with an RBI, while Markel Whitaker drew three walks on the night, stole a pair of bases and scored twice.

Jackson’s no-no came on the heels of Lane Floyd’s complete game 10-5 win Monday night over Gray Academy. Floyd struck out four and scattered five hits while walking only one. None of Floyd’s runs were earned.

Whitaker provided the boost for the Griffins at the plate, belting a 2-run homer to tie the game at 3. Whitaker ended the night going 3-for-4 with a double and a single to go along with the dinger, scoring 3 runs and driving in 3.

McManus peppered Gray with three singles, going 3-for-3 with 3 RBIs, while Boyd and Willie Foster both went 2-for-4. Dalton Truesdale was 1-for-4 with a run and a stolen base, while Byron Sampson swiped three bags as a designated runner.

“We’ve got 19 players on our roster this year,” Dean said, “and I think all of them can contribute somewhere. I feel comfortable with any one of them out on the field.”

With their first region win under their belts, the Griffins are facing some stiff competition in the conference with the addition of Mid-Carolina.

“We’ve got our work cut out for us,” Dean said, “but I think we’re well-equipped for it. I think the days of us being in the middle tier of the region are over.”

The Griffins continue region play at home against Columbia Thursday, then travel to Newberry on March 19. Their first taste of Mid-Carolina will come at home on March 20.