Guilford off to good conference start

Cyrus Wimberly of Guilford swings for a hit in a conference game against Auburn. Wimberly, who will attend college at Valparaiso, has four of the Vikings' eight wins as a pitcher. Photo by Matt Nestor

By Matt Nestor
Sports Columnist

All coaches know in baseball that sometimes you can be as good as your best pitcher.

The Guilford Vikings are hoping they have that secret weapon.

Led by Cyrus Wimberly, the Vikings’ star pitcher and shortstop, and a whole cast of returning starters, the Vikings are certainly among the best the NIC-10 has to offer this year.

The Vikings (8-4, 2-1) are off to a good start, thanks in large part to Wimberly, who will be playing baseball in college at Valparaiso University with fellow NIC-10 stars Ryan Scarpetta of Hononegah and Michael Morman of Boylan. The senior has half of Guilford’s wins as a starting pitcher, and also plays a near flawless shortstop when he is not on the mound.

More than anything else, however, his bat is one of the best in the conference.

Against Auburn, he hit a towering two-run home-run and would have had a double against the Knights if not for an umpire’s call. Once robbed of that double, Wimberly stole second base anyway.

He followed that up with a three-hit performance while pitching in a close loss to conference-favorite Boylan.

But the Vikings are much more than just Wimberly. They return six other starters besides the Division 1 signee, including Ryan Blume, T.J. Zirk, Caleb Wilson, Maikel Fresco, Sean Ritter and Brad Gyorkos.

The Vikings returned more experience than any other team in the conference. What coach Steve Mrizek hopes is that the experience, as well as one of the top players in the conference, is enough to carry them come time for the regionals.

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From the April 21-27, 2010 issue

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