Topsail softball edges Laney to remain tied for first in MEC
Nee Nee Jordan is one of the fastest players in the Mideastern Conference.
On Monday night, the Topsail junior used her speed score the game-winning run in a 3-2 victory at Laney that kept the Pirates tied for first in the Mideastern Conference standings.
Jordan, a left-handed slapper, ripped a single up the middle to lead off the sixth inning. The ball went past Laney’s pulled-in outfield and rolled all the way to the fence. By the time the Buccaneers got the ball in, Jordan was standing on third base.
The UNC commit dove home safely moments later on a wild pitch.“As soon as I hit it I was thinking about getting extra bases or even scoring,” said Jordan, who also scored in the fourth inning.
Topsail (11-1, 7-1) will host West Brunswick on Thursday in a game that will likely to be for first place in the conference. Both teams play Tuesday, with Topsail traveling to Ashley and West Brunswick hosting New Hanover.
Laney (10-4, 6-3) struck for the first run in the bottom of the first inning when Tristen Horrell singled up the middle to score Sarah Manis.
Horrell went 2-for-3 with a walk and also stuck out six in a complete game in the circle.The Pirates grabbed a 2-1 lead on a two-out, two-run infield single off the bat of Annalee Hart in the fourth inning. Sydney Hartgrove scored from third base and Jordan followed behind from second.
“Tristen is a stud. She’s one of the best players in our conference,” Topsail coach Eric Phillips said. “We always tell our girls to battle. We can live with a strikeout, but battle and make it hard on her. That’s a tough team and we grew up tonight.”
Regan Stewart tied the game up in the bottom half of the fourth on a double to center that allowed Horrell to score. The Buccaneers had runners on second and third with no outs, but failed to score. The inning ended in an unusual way, as Isabelle Nance’s hard-hit grounder up the middle hit Stewart, who was heading from second base to third.
That wasn’t the only jam Topsail pitcher Addy Howard worked out of. In the sixth inning, Laney had runners on first and third with one out before Howard got her fifth and final strikeout and a groundout to escape. The Buccaneers left nine runners on base.“Addy came up to me before the game and told me she didn’t didn’t have her best stuff,” Phillips said. “I just asked her to give me what she battled all night.”