Southside, South Creek meet in fourth roundPublished 7:52pm Monday, May 20, 2013
They say the third time’s the charm and Southside is hoping they’re right as the Seahawks will play Four Rivers Conference rival South Creek for the third time this season tonight at 6 p.m. in the fourth round of the NCHSAA 1-A playoffs.
Southside, the Four Rivers Conference co-champions, escaped the third round by beating fellow conference champs Northside 3-0, while the Cougars downed Perquimans 4-3 to advance.
The No. 1-seeded Seahawks (18-3) have benefited from the home field advantage throughout the first three rounds of the playoffs and will look to do so again tonight as they prepare for No. 3 South Creek (20-4) and its pair of fire-balling aces Lauren Sitterson and Taylor Moore.
“I think the home field is paying off a lot because we don’t have to travel and we have our routine down,” Southside coach John Lohman said. “Being home allows us to do a lot of hitting. I can prepare the pitching machines to match the type of pitching we’re getting ready to see and I think that’s a big help. Usually we just do soft-tossing at away games, but we can get totally prepped at home.”
The Seahawks will need every advantage they can get as they face a Cougars team that dealt Southside two of its three losses this season.
Great pitching has been a common factor in the team’s two previous meetings as Southside ace Savannah Mumford held the hard-hitting Cougars to two runs each contest. However, the combo of Sitterson and Moore were slightly better as they allowed only one run in 14 innings.
“We didn’t hit well against them, we struggled,” Lohman said. “They have very good pitching and we didn’t do a good job adjusting to it. We just didn’t put a lot of pressure on them.”
Southside is hoping that will change tonight and there’s good cause to believe it can as the Seahawks clubbed two home runs to top Camden in the second round and benefited from another round-tripper during their third-round clash with the Panthers.
Aside from having great pitching, the Cougars present a fierce lineup led by slugger Kim Mobley and if the Seahawks want to advance to the East Regional round of the playoffs they must continue to get production from the likes of Mumford, Sondra Sparks, Marlin Edwards an Tia Hardy.
“We have to hit and we have to score runs,” Lohman said. “If you don’t score at least one run you’re not going to win no matter what, so we have to score some runs.”