East wins NPC showdown
By Mike London
KANNAPOLIS3 ó iAmazing game, a tough, tough, tough game,î East Rowan pitcher Chelsea White said.
Thatís three toughs if youíre counting, but30 wouldnít have been too many. East survived Northwest Cabarrus 3-2 in nine innings on Wednesday in a matchup of softball teams that entered the game unbeaten in NPC play.
White threw a three-hitter and shut out the Trojans the last eight innings. Northwest hurler Alex Yohe limited the Mustangs to five hits. Only two left the infield.
East (8-1, 7-0) fell in a quick 2-0 hole on the road, but But Ericka Nesbittís walk and Taylor Areyís double set the table in the third, and East got both runs back. White confessed sheís inot much of a bunterî but her squeeze up the third-base line keyed the inning. Northwestís Taylor Allen fielded the ball, but Nesbitt slipped around her and scored.
iA break,î East coach Mike Waddell said. iIf the girl turns the other way, she tags out Ericka.î
After Kelsea Kluttzís walk loaded the bases, Kayla Potts was hit by a pitch to force home the tying run. After that, White and Yohe took turns dodging jams.
East, which played without starters Haley Barrier and Winter Heno, had momentum after first baseman Mallory Drew snagged a liner for a double play to end the sixth, but Northwest got it back when East popped into a double play with the bases full in the eighth.
Nesbitt walked to start the ninth and moved to second on Areyís infield hit. Then Nesbitt saw Waddell give the steal sign. She took off, stole third, and raced home as the throw got into left field.
iI saw the ball going into the outfield, and I was like, ëYes!í i Nesbitt said. iScoring that run, I felt it down in the bottom of my heart.î
It was finally over after White got the Trojans 1-2-3 in the ninth.
iWe won with an aspect we havenít been able to do in a few years,î Waddell said. iErickaís speed put some pressure on them.î
Contact Mike London at 704-797-4259 or firstname.lastname@example.org.