Sophomore Kieton Rivers of Nansemond River High School slides in to third base during Wednesday's match-up against visiting King's Fork High School. Rivers had three hits and one RBI, helping the Warriors win 6-0. (Photo by Wil Davis)
Sophomore Kieton Rivers of Nansemond River High School slides in to third base during Wednesday's match-up against visiting King's Fork High School. Rivers had three hits and one RBI, helping the Warriors win 6-0. (Photo by Wil Davis)

Warriors overpower Bulldogs on diamond

Published 11:01pm Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Nansemond River High School rode the momentum from a blowout win over Deep Creek High School last week into Wednesday night’s cross-town game against King’s Fork High School. Because of the recent inclement weather, the Bulldogs were not able to host, so the action moved to Nansemond River.

The game was fairly tight throughout, but a five-run third inning helped power the Warriors to a 6-0 win.

Nansemond River head coach Mark Stuffel was happy with his team’s execution. He pointed out that, for this season, it was “the first game we haven’t had an error, which was big for this young group.”

The Warriors benefited from the performance on the mound by senior Matt Boone, who had seven strikeouts. After a great showing against Deep Creek, Wednesday’s game did nothing to lower his confidence level.

“It only increases,” he said. “It was a little bit surprising. I didn’t know I was going to be playing for Robert (Fitzwater).”

Sophomore Robert Fitzwater started the game, but after getting one batter out, he had to leave the game due to a problem with his arm.

The amount of time that Boone has spent overall on the mound this season has been a surprise to him.

“I thought I’d at least close sometimes, but the performances have been good, getting outs to the defense again and it earns more playing time on the mound,” he said.

Senior Tyler Jordan, who plays catcher, had nothing but praise for Boone.

“I love catching him,” he said. “I just like him going out there and throwing strikes. That’s all I have to say.”

Jordan got back into character on offense, with two hits and three RBIs.

“It was a good bounce-back,” he said. “I’m happy to do my part. I’ve been slumping a little bit, so I’m glad I could just do my part and cheer my teammates on. It feels good to play perfect, almost.”

Sophomore Kieton Rivers continued to make strong contributions on offense with three hits and one run batted in.

King’s Fork head coach Pat Stafford would have loved to have the third inning back.

“I think one inning killed us tonight,” he said. “I think the first two innings and the last three innings we played pretty well.”

Though the Bulldogs are winless so far in 2013, Stafford is encouraged by his team’s significant reduction in errors and their improvement in pitching and hitting over last year. He said it’s just a matter of putting it all together now.

Western Branch High School will visit Nansemond River (4-2, 4-2) tonight while King’s Fork (0-5, 0-5) will host Indian River High School at the same time.

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