Lakeland senior days upset by Hornets

Published 10:48 pm Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Deep Creek spoiled senior day for Lakeland’s baseball and softball squads on Wednesday as all four teams finished their seasons.

Coming in off a 28-8 win against Indian River on Monday, the Lady Cavaliers (4-16, 4-14) fell 13-1 to Deep Creek. Deep Creek scored five runs in the top of the first inning and put the game out of reach with five more in the third inning to make its advantage 10-1.

Lakeland’s lone run came in the bottom of the first with Erika Wood’s single driving in Jaclyn Wood. DC’s Samantha Burritt allowed seven hits to the Cavs, but no walks, and Burritt struck out 10.

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Prior to the game, Lakeland head coach Steve Wood recognized his two seniors, Ashley Carroll and Shelby Pendleton. Pendleton, normally Lakeland’s centerfielder, missed Wednesday’s finale with an injury that had her on crutches. Pendleton has accepted a scholarship offer to play softball at Chowan University next year.

Carroll, Lakeland’s top pitcher this season, committed to play softball at Louisburg College last week.

On the diamond at Lakeland, the Hornets slugged their way to a 13-1 lead through four-and-a-half innings and finished with a 13-7 win. Lakeland (8-12, 7-11) had seven seniors playing their final game as Cavaliers.

Lakeland’s top starting pitcher, Jeremy Hagwood, and his brother and battery mate, Jarrett Hagwood, are set to attend and play baseball at Virginia Wesleyan next year. Jarrett missed most of this season after suffering a broken leg in Lakeland’s first game against Great Bridge.

James Gatling, who played third base before moving to the catcher spot after Hagwood’s injury, plans to play baseball at Newport News Apprentice School.

Michael Espinosa, Kevin Lowther, Justin Hike and Raphael Edwards were also honored on their senior day. Going by Lakeland’s normal lineup at the start of the season, the Cavs will be replacing five of their six infielders come next spring.

Lowther had the main highlight of the afternoon for the Cavs when he drove a high fly over the left field fence for a three-run home run in the fifth inning. Lance Smith added a two-run single in the fifth.

The Cavaliers finish the season with a 4-0 record against city rivals Nansemond River and King’s Fork. It’s the first city title for Lakeland since King’s Fork’s opening gave Suffolk three high schools in 2004-05.

“All of (the seniors) are strong leaders. They pulled together and played well all season. When Jarrett went down with the injury, others stepped up and filled in,” said Lakeland head coach Bruce Hagwood.

“What I like the most about this class is they’re teammates on the field, but they’re also very good friends. They always look out for each other and are hanging out with each other,” said Hagwood.