The Fayetteville Wolves marched through the AHSAA playoffs this season, advancing all the way to the semifinals before falling to eventual state champions St. Luke’s in two games. It was a banner year that earned the team six All-County first team selections, as well as Player of the Year, Zane McGrady. McGrady batted .385 while leading the team with six home runs, 14 doubles, and a .711 slugging percentage. He also had 40 hits and 29 RBIs.
“Zane had a real good year for us,” Wolves coach Morris Phillips said. “I’m proud of him. He’s just a sophomore. He came up big for us with his bat this year. He gives all he has, even if it’s practice or if it’s a game. It’s a great honor for him.”
Another sophomore, Weston Brassell, was a key bat for the Wolves and emerged as the team’s closer late in the season. Brassell led the team with a .414 batting average and 41 hits and finishing tied for second with 32 runs scored.
“Weston did a real good job this year,” Phillips said. “He stepped up and played first base for us this year. That’s something that he hasn’t done a lot in the past. He turned out to do an awesome job at it. He stepped up big for us as a closer on the mound. Just being able to have that guy to go to that you know is pretty consistent, he wants it and he likes that role. I’m just real proud that he’s able to do it for us.”
Two more hitters rotated the duties as the team’s designated hitter: Steve Brasher and Levi Blanchard.
“Consistently this year, you had Levi Blanchard, Steve Brasher and Weston Brassell, along with Zane, right there, that were pretty consistent all year long,” Phillips said. “It was a big part of our success this year.”
Blanchard played in the outfield and as a pitcher, and Brasher was a key member of the rotation. Brasher batted .362 and led the team with 35 RBIs. Brasher received 10 starts on the mound and finished with a 2.18 ERA. Blanchard batted .390 and was second on the team with 32 RBIs.
Another one of Fayetteville’s sophomores, Byran Osbourn, earned a first-team selection.
“Ozzy did a great job all year long,” Phillips said. “He battled and he kept us in some games. We didn’t give him the run support that he needed in several games earlier in the year, or his record would be a lot better than what it is. When you break his numbers down, he did a really great job for us this year on the mound. His success in the playoffs — I think he pitched in every series we played in — I’m just real proud of him and how he did.”
Osbourn logged 39 innings for the Wolves and finished the season with a 2.15 ERA.
Senior Slade Scroggins rounded out the Wolves’ first-team selections. Scroggins led the team with 23 stolen bases in 23 attempts. Scroggins batted .340 on the season and also led the team with 43 runs scored.
“Slade is a senior and he anchored second base for us,” Phillips said. “He did a phenomenal job. Any ball hit in shallow outfield, he was pretty much tracking them down as far as fly balls. He did real good job for us of getting on base, had a good batting average, and stole a lot of bases. He’s just a smart baseball player.”
Phillips earned Coach of the Year honors.
“I’m very blessed and very honored to be selected as the Coach of the Year,” he said. “I couldn’t be the Coach of the Year if it wasn’t for those ball players that I have—they’re great athletes and good guys — and the coaching staff that’s around me: Jason Kornegay and Patrick Murphy, who followed our varsity all year, and coach (John) Limbaugh and Johnny Guy helped us out this year with our junior high and our B team and helped us out some on varsity. Those guys deserve this just as much as I do, because it’s a team game. So, it takes all of us coaching and it takes those ball players playing for us.”
Senior Tyler Pennington, juniors Austin Brasher and Jake Skinner and sophomore Hunter Limbaugh earned honorable mention selections.
The B.B. Comer Tigers had two seniors finish their careers with All County first team selections: Tyler Holmes and Dylan McClure.
“The numbers set everything up,” head coach Evan Blair said. “There’s no doubt they’re good baseball players or the other coaches wouldn’t have recommended them for it. They’re good kids. It was a pleasure getting to coach them, I was lucky to get to coach them. They come from great families. They’re both going to do a lot of things in the world. They’re great representatives for the program as much as they are good baseball players, too.”
The Tigers’ Zach Osbourn, Cory Harris, Triston Sims and Dustin Sumners also earned honorable mention selections.
The Winterboro Bulldogs also had two All County first team selections: Colby Wheeler and Brady Wideman.
The Bulldogs put together a respectable season, earning double-digit wins. Wideman’s presence on the mound and at shortstop and Wheeler’s leadership both at and behind the plate played a critical role in the team’s success.
“Colby came out to a slow start hitting, but he ended up really hot at the end of the year,” head coach Alan Beckett said. “He’s really a tough out at the plate. He’s a really aggressive base runner. He did a great job for us catching. In years past, he has not always been a catcher, but as a catcher he did a good job. Brady definitely had a good year on the mound. He was a really strong defensive player in the field as well.”
Andrew Pitts and Jonathan Harris earned honorable mention selections.
The All County selections are chosen by the coaches in the county.