FREDERICK, MD., AUG. 25 -- The Frederick Keys moved a step closer to the Carolina League Northern Division title tonight by shutting out the Winston-Salem Spirits, 4-0, behind the five-hit pitching of Zachary Kerr.

Kerr (13-7) needed only Ken Wearing's bad-hop, run-scoring single in the seventh to push the Keys' lead to three games over the Prince William Cannons. The Keys will visit Prince William Tuesday for a crucial five-game series.

Kerr struck out nine and allowed only three runners to get in scoring position before giving way to reliever Jeff Williams in the ninth. Winston-Salem starter Bill Kazmierczak (2-4) held Frederick to six hits through six innings before weakening in the seventh.

The Keys reached Kazmierczak with a two-out rally in the sixth. Tyrone Kingwood (three for four, two runs scored) hit a towering double off the 20-foot wall in left field. Mel Wearing grounded a high hopper past Smith and Kingwood scored easily from second. Catcher John Posey threw out Wearing as he attempted to reach second on the play at home.

The Keys padded their lead in the seventh and eighth innings. Tim Holland led off the seventh with a double and moved to third on T.R. Lewis's single to center. Pete Rose greeted reliever Brad Davis with a sacrifice fly for the game's second run. Tim Holland's double the next inning scored the Keys' final two runs.

Indians 7, Cannons 2: Designated hitter Mark Tepper went three for four with four runs batted in to lead host Kinston to the win before 3,210.

Kinston improved to 37-20, the best record in the Carolina League, while Prince William fell to 27-32. Cannons starter Frank Seminara (16-7) pitched 5 2/3 innings, allowing all seven runs, five of them earned.