Seahawks coast

Published 11:59 pm Friday, April 18, 2014



The Seahawks are fighting to stay relevant in the Coastal Plains Conference following a tough road stint at Northside and East Carteret, but after defeating Jones Senior in a 20-4 offensive showcase on Thursday, Southside carried the momentum into Friday, easily knocking off Bear Grass, 11-1.

“We put the bat on the ball, one through nine,” said head coach Kevin McRoy. “Last week we struggled at the plate, and they came alive a little bit yesterday, but today they were great, put pressure on the defense.”

Ace Alex Graves, who was touched up for three runs in just two innings of work in his previous start, toed the rubber for the second time this week and managed to rebound against an offensively deficient Bears lineup. As for the Seahawk bats, they gave their starter a surplus of early run support for the second-straight game.

Junior Wil Mumford led off the game with a walk, and Graves followed with a nine-pitch at bat, shooting a single through the gap that scored Mumford all the way from first. The Southside senior later scored on an error by the right fielder and sophomore Dylan Lewis, who reached on the error, scored via a wild pitch.

McRoy’s young lineup tacked on another three runs in the second inning on back-to-back singles from senior Colt Dixon and sophomore Lawrence Brown, two walks and a couple of costly throwing errors, already Bear Grass’ third.

As the Bears’ struggled, Graves took his time with each batter he faced, taking hitters deep into counts and struggling with his command at times, but the senior leader worked his way out of jams and defensive blunders.

Down six runs, Bear Grass finally broke through in the third after an grounder trickled between the legs of the second baseman to plate the Bears’ first run. Graves later struck out Chris Hardison looking with the bases loaded.

Needing five runs to activate the mercy rule, Graves smashed a double off the wall to lead off the fifth, as senior Austin Nolbles, freshman Hunter Sparks and Dixon followed by notching singles, combining for two runs in the frame.

In the fifth, Mumford and Nobles reached on singles and with two outs, senior John McCormick sent the Seahawks faithful home early on a chilly April night with a two-run double.

Graves finished with five strikeouts in five innings, allowing just two hits.

“Alex is my senior leader. He’s not a vocal leader, but he leads by example,” McRoy said. “I depend on Alex a lot, and he always steps to the plate and does anything I ask of him. Great kid to coach. He struggled a bit tonight, but he got over it quickly and knows he’s not going to be perfect every time. He settles down and made the plays when needed.”

The victory improves the Seahawks to 6-7 (3-5 Coastal Plains) this season, and the team currently sits fifth in the standings with four regular season games remaining.

“I’m hoping we can get some confidence going,” McRoy said. “I feel like we let a few games slip through our fingers, but now hopefully they’ll start to believe in themselves a little bit. We should be able to put some pressure on some people in the conference.”

Southside will have the week off for spring break and will face Lejeune on Wednesday, April 30.