Thursday, March 13, 2014
Despite not getting the outcome they had hoped for, the North Augusta softball team got a measure of revenge on Monday night.
The Lady Jackets (3-1) cruised through the Midland Valley tournament until being derailed in the championship game against the host Mustangs. North Augusta beat South Aiken, 4-0, on Wednesday, March 5 behind the arm of Natalie Burke. She tossed five scoreless innings, surrendering three hits and a walk while recording seven strikeouts. Chelsea Newman was 2-for-2 for North Augusta, while Kaleigh Busbee and Maddie Shiver each hit doubles.
However, on Saturday in the championship game of the Palmetto Classic, the Lady Jackets committed eight errors in a 7-2 loss. Grace Flanders had the lone extra-base hit, with a double. Newman and Karly Heath had one RBI each as the Jackets only had five total hits.
“I can’t answer it,” head coach Derrick Quinn said following the loss. “That’s not the type of ball we play. I really don’t have the words because we don’t play that way. Obviously it’s all on me and I need to do a much better job.”
Meghan Whitfield, who had been stellar throughout the preseason, was charged with the loss.
“We need to improve everywhere,” she said. “Especially with hitting. Today our defense was not good at all and we will work on that at practice. As a team we cannot blame anybody for the outcome but ourselves.”
Flanders and Brooke Lavallee both made the all-tournament team, which was selected by the coaches.
After a Sunday practice the Jackets then turned around and played the Mustangs again on Monday night. This time, at home, North Augusta came out on top, 3-0. Shiver and Busbee both homered for the Jackets and had all three of the RBIs. Whitfield also went 2-for-3 and Burke picked up the win on the mound.
“We played basic, fundamental softball,” Quinn said. “We only had one error and didn’t walk anybody. We had timely hitting. We’re going to keep working on the basics to get better day by day.”
Coming up the Jackets have a game scheduled at Lexington on Tuesday night. They will also play White Knoll on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at Riverview Park Activities Center.
Scott Rodgers is the news editor at The North Augusta Star and has been with the paper since January 2013. Follow him on Twitter @NAStarRodgers.