Warrior seniors finish with rivalry win

Published 10:45 pm Friday, May 21, 2010

Led by its four seniors on senior day, Nansemond River’s baseball squad finished its 2010 season by completing a 4-0 city sweep with an 11-2 victory over visiting Lakeland Friday evening.

Seniors Reid Hoffler, D.J. Williams, Artur Gonzales and Kevin Miller played their last game for the Warriors. All four contributed, led by Hoffler pitching 4.2 innings and getting the win while going 4-for-4 at the plate.

The Warriors flirted with a top-four finish and a playoff spot in the Southeastern District at times this season. For the most part though, the focus this spring was on building a young team for the next one or two springs, making what this senior class contributed special said NR head coach Mark Stuffel.

Email newsletter signup

“They knew they weren’t going to get a lot of playing time, but they led all season long,” Stuffel said.

“Our younger guys played most of the time, but if one of the young guys stepped out of line, a senior would let them know what’s expected. This is a great group of seniors,” Stuffel said.

Hoffler’s win on the mound was finished off with Gonzales coming in from left field to the mound for the last two batters of the game.

The Warriors (10-10) broke the game open early with a 6-run second inning. Blake Eure doubled off the fence to start the frame. Zack Vann, Hoffler, Will Hunter and Williams all had RBI hits in the rally.

In the fourth, after the first three Warrior hitters in the inning reached base, Eure blasted a grand slam for his first varsity home run.

Miller and Hunter finished with two hits each. Kyle Moore and Travis Johnson combined for 2.0 scoreless innings between Hoffler and Gonzales.

Lakeland (3-17) was an even younger team than its city rival this season. Brandon Snook, who caught Friday evening for the Cavs, is Lakeland’s only senior.

Lakeland started back in February practices with 10 players on the varsity squad. The highlight of the Cavalier year was a win at King’s Fork where Lakeland played the last four innings with eight players. Lakeland had nine players for the season finale.