NSA returns as a top competitor

Published 9:33 pm Wednesday, March 14, 2018

The Nansemond-Suffolk Academy softball team returns a strong team with big goals this year.

NSA had one of the most successful softball teams in the Hampton Roads area last year. They finished with a 22-3 record and were the Tidewater Conference of Independent Schools Conference Champions and conference tournament champions. Their season ended in the Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association Division II state semifinal after a loss to St. Margaret’s School.

They return all but one player from that team and will be led by VISAA D-II State Player of the Year Emerson Puzey. Along with Puzey, the Lady Saints return Madi Wilson, Madi Currin. Dani Goodman and Kelly Turner. Wilson, along with standout Addy Greene, were first team All-State players for NSA last year. Currin made the second team All-State. Lady Saints coach Brittany Thornburg is excited about the seniors she has leading the team this year, as she has coached them since they have been in eighth grade. Overall, Thornburg is more than happy with how her team is shaping up.

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“I think we are in a good position roster wise, and it should be a good season for us,” Thornburg said. “They have been working hard all offseason.”

Because the season didn’t end the way the Lady Saints wanted it to last year, it will serve as a motivator for them this season. They were regarded as a team that could win the state championship and were even ranked No. 1 in the VISAA D-II poll for various amounts of time during the season last year.

“I think the girls got a taste of the state tournament and success and they know what it feels like,” Thornburg said. “We are definitely hungry for more. We want to compete every day. We look good on paper, but we have to go out there and compete.”

NSA wants to win a state championship this season ultimately, and they have the talent to do so. However, before they get there, they want first to win the conference and conference tournament.

They will travel to Richmond this Friday to compete in a tournament and will face Southampton Academy in their first game at 4 p.m. at Dinwiddie Sports Complex. They will also face Fuqua School at noon Saturday at the same venue.