Warriors and Lady Warriors fall to Grizzlies
Grassfield held Nansemond River’s softball team quiet Friday evening in a Southeastern District game at River and the Grizzlies held the Warriors completely silent on the baseball diamond. Both the 8-3 setback in the softball contest and the 4-0 baseball loss were big blows to the slim remaining chances both Warrior teams had of reaching their district tournaments.
The Lady Warriors allowed two runs to the Lady Grizzlies in the top of the first, but fought back to make a game of it.
Anna Cain, NR’s all-district catcher and clean-up hitter started NR’s offense in the second inning and came through with a clutch two-out hit in the third.
In the second, Cain lead off with a sharp single up the middle. After back-to-back fielder’s choices, moving Cain around to third, Rachel Hawks hit a grounder to shortstop that turned into a Grassfield error, allowing Cain to score.
In the third, leadoff hitter Sydney Glover singled to start things off and was on second with two outs. Cain hit a liner into right-center field to drive in Glover and make it 2-2.
Hawks and the Lady Warrior defense held Grassfield in order in the second and third, but the Lady Grizzlies got going again once NR tied the game.
Grassfield totaled seven of its 10 hits against Hawks from the fourth inning on. All 10 hits were singles, but they added up and the Lady Grizzlies capitalized every time with runners in scoring position.
The Lady Warriors (7-9, 7-9) finish their regular season next week with a game at Deep Creek Monday and with a visit by Lakeland on Wednesday.
On the baseball diamond, Grassfield made it a season sweep and 14 shutout innings against the Warriors (9-9, 8-8) this season. The Grizzlies won the meeting in Chesapeake 1-0.
Again, the Warrior pitchers kept their side in the game, but even with holding the Grizzlies to four runs on six hits, there was more NR head coach Mark Stuffel would’ve liked to see.
Grassfield scored with a solo homer in the third to move ahead 2-0, but the other three runs scored with help from walks.
“Whenever you give teams free bases, it always comes back and gets you,” Stuffel said. “All our guys had good stuff tonight, they just weren’t going at the batters enough.”
Kyle Moore, who pitched a great complete game in NR’s first game versus Grassfield, started and went 3.1 innings, allowing three runs. Reid Hoffler pitched 1.0 innings and allowed a run. Travis Johnson pitched the last 2.2 innings, allowing no runs and only one walk in the eight hitters he faced.
NR’s best chances to put something on the board were the first and seventh innings. In the first, Moore singled with two down and stole second. Zack Vann followed with a hit to left field, only for Moore to be thrown out trying to score.
In the final inning, Johnson and Josh Howard singled, but Grassfield left both runners stranded.
“Our defense was phenomenal tonight and that’s a good thing,” Stuffel said.
Even as the Warriors are likely going into their last two games of the season, Stuffel sees the progress his team, with a lineup made up mostly of sophomores, is making.
“That’s the first time our guys have had pretty good swings against guys with real good velocity. A lot of our guys hadn’t seen velocity like this before this season, now, after seven or eight games against pitchers like this, we’re starting to figure things out,” Stuffel said.
The Warriors also play at Deep Creek Monday and home against Lakeland Wednesday.