NSA wins delayed game
Published 9:46 pm Wednesday, May 16, 2012
By Titus Mohler
The Nansemond-Suffolk Academy softball squad finally defeated St. Catherine’s School 5-0 after a weather delay stretched round one of the Division I VISAA state tournament into a two-day contest.
Leading the way again was senior Morgan Daughtry, who threw seven strikeouts and scored twice.
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Daughtry and Brooklyn Carr, an eighth-grader, both scored in the first inning. In the third, junior Katelyn McCracken singled to bring Daughtry home for another run, and senior Ugi Metzger did the same to bring in McCracken. Senior Nicole Turner rounded out the scoring for the inning and the game.
Midway through the fourth, the game was delayed because of weather until 4:30 p.m. Wednesday. After the game was completed, head coach Kim Aston was only willing to praise one side of the team’s performance.
“I thought we played good defense, and Morgan pitched well the entire game,” she said. “Hitting-wise, we did not play well.”
During the fifth inning, the St. Catherine’s pitcher struck out three consecutive Lady Saints batters.
“You can’t hit the ball if you don’t swing the bat,” Aston said. “So, I think we came out with the thought process that it was five to nothing and we didn’t have to do anything. We were trying to hurry up and get the game over with, and that’s not what you want to see going into the state tournament.”
Daughtry was in agreement with Aston on the team’s effort.
“Day one, I felt like we came out strong, ready to play, but today, it was a little weak,” she said. “We all knew that we were up 5-0. Our heads weren’t exactly in it, but we still pulled it off.”
NSA will play in Petersburg for the remainder of the state tournament. The semi-final game is scheduled for Thursday at 5 p.m., and the state championship will be played Friday at 5 p.m.
Aston provided some history and perspective on NSA’s performance at the state tournament.
“Well, the last four years we have won the first round game, except for last year, and then we lost in the semis, but when we’ve lost, we’ve lost to Bishop O’Connell who’s always the No. 1 seed,” she said. “So, this is the first year that we’ve been in the opposite bracket from them ‘cause we’re a two (seed). We’ve typically been a four or five (seed).”
Though she was not sure who her team would be playing yet, Aston suspects it will be Paul VI Catholic High School.
“When Morgan was a freshman and sophomore we beat them, last year we lost to them,” Aston said.
“Last year,” Daughtry said, “we played them in the first round of states and we came out really weak, not wanting to play and they beat us by, like, six runs, I think.”
Aston was clear on what needs to happen this time.
“We’ve got to come out and produce some more offense if we’re going to beat Paul VI,” she said. “Their pitching is not fantastic — it’s not bad — but it’s very hittable. So, we need to go out there and be aggressive and not stand in the box watching two strikes go by and then you give yourself one swing.”
She expects the Lady Saints to win, though. Even though they lost last year’s matchup 9-4, she felt like they were the better team even then.
Daughtry indicated her readiness.
“So, I want to go out there and show them that we are better this year and we can beat them,” Daughtry said. “So, hopefully the whole team feels the same way.”