By VAN HOLLAND
Senior Will Dupree threw a complete game shutout Tuesday night at Municipal Stadium to earn his first win of the season. He gave up four hits and struck out 10 to help lead the Tarboro Vikings to a 1-0 victory over the Kinston Vikings in Eastern Plains Conference action.
Tarboro (3-6, 2-2) came into the game needing a win bad, because they had dropped their last three games and had fallen in the cellar. With the win, it moves them back into fourth place in the conference.
"Will was fantastic for us tonight," Tarboro coach Justin Smith said. "He was effective the whole game and gave us that chance to win the game."
Dupree came through in the fourth inning offensively when he grounded out to shortstop and drove in the only run of the game to score Tristan Bateman after he had reached on an error by the third baseman to start the inning.
Tarboro's defense had been lackluster as of late, but the past two games they haven't made an error and have started to come around defensively.
"Our defense is coming around," Smith said. "We played a good all around game tonight."
Smith now knows to get all three phases to come together, he is going to have to get the offense to come through. Tarboro had only three hits in the game.
"Our offensive approach is getting better," Smith said. "We ran ourselves out of two innings after we made some base running mistakes but we are getting there."
The mistakes Smith is talking about came in the first two innings, when they had runners in scoring position. In the first inning they made the second out of the inning at third base when Bateman was thrown out at third after Travis Martin had advanced him to second on a sacrifice bunt. Bateman tried to take an extra base and was gunned down. In the second inning, Joe Miller tried to score on throw to second from the catcher after a steal, but Kinston cut the ball off and threw Miller out at the plate.
"The mistakes were just from miscommunication," Smith said. "We ran ourselves out of two innings with those simple mistakes."
After the mistakes, Smith looked back on it and said he knew that they could've score two or three more runs if those mistakes hadn't of happened. He said his team is still working on getting to where they need to be and feels like they are making progress everyday.
"I have to give the kids credit because they aren't giving up," Smith said. "We manufactured that run to win the game and that is a sign of improvement."
Tarboro is back in action Thursday when they host county rival SouthWest at 7 p.m.