Warriors take on rival Mustangs in three-game series


Lainey Devlin

The NC Warriors faced off against rival Kennesaw Mountain Mustangs the week of April 8, 2019. The rival teams played competitively and passionately, NC winning one of the three games and demonstrating a valiant fight in the others. “Kennesaw Mountain series is always hard-fought and emotional like a rivalry series should be,” Head Coach Tom Callahan said.

Lainey Devlin, Reporter, Photographer

The NC Varsity baseball team played multiple region matchup games against rival Kennesaw Mountain Mustangs beginning on Monday, April 8. The matchup consisted of three games, the first played at home and the other two played on the Mustang’s field.

The first game started with a bang when Magnet junior Gavin Smith scored a run for the Warriors off of junior Thomas Chandler’s hit, providing the Warriors with an early lead.

For the next five innings, the Warriors brought forward a variety of offensive and defensive tactics that never resulted in any runs but proved their skill and ability to maintain level-headedness despite taunts from the other team.

The Mustangs scored three runs off of pitcher and junior Nathan Williams, challenging the Warrior lead. However, the Warriors did not surrender their efforts and brought forth an admirable performance in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Fans excitedly watched as freshman Logan Bare and junior Ethan Fry walked and Magnet sophomore Harry Ford hit, loading the bases. Fry and Bare made runs off of Smith’s hit and Ford made another run after, tying up the game and forcing it to go into extra innings.

A single and error by the Mustangs brought Ford to third where he made a run and earned a win for the Warriors, bringing the final score to 5-4.

“Winning the game was really cool, I think it really helped the team gain confidence for the next two, and it was overall a great experience to be a part of,” Ford said.

The second game in the series took place at Mustang Field on Wednesday, April 10. At the top of the first inning, Ford started the game strong with a run off of senior Jonathan Young’s hit. Unfortunately, the lead did not last long with the Mustangs scoring seven runs in the second inning off of pitcher Ethan Fry.

Lainey Devlin
Magnet junior Andrew Martinez took the mound during the third inning against the Mustangs, Martinez proceeded to strike out the Mustang’s batters and bring the Warriors back up to the plate. “It was really cool to pitch, especially against Kennesaw Mountain because I got to strike out some of my friends. Knowing [the Mustangs] definitely made the game more interesting,” Martinez said.
In the third inning, Fry retired as a pitcher, bringing Magnet junior Andrew Martinez up to the mound. Martinez struck out the side of the Mustangs and brought the Warriors up to bat again for the fourth inning.

Ford started the inning strong for the Warriors, again making it to third off of a single and Mustangs error. He then scored a run for the Warriors off of Smith’s hit. Young hit a double, bringing Smith up to third, and they both ran home off of senior Thomas Chandler’s hit.

In the fifth inning, Bare scored a run off of Smith’s hit, which was countered in the bottom of the inning with a run from the Mustangs.

Lainey Devlin
While playing the Kennesaw Mountain Mustangs, the Warriors showed teamwork in their offensive and defensive tactics. Sophomore Trevor Lovett aided in gaining multiple runs against the Mustangs. “My favorite part of baseball is for sure helping my teammates get runs. I think teamwork is really important, especially in baseball. That’s something the team needs to work on,” Lovett said.

After an uneventful sixth inning, Smith scored a run off of sophomore Trevor Lovett’s hit in the seventh inning, bringing the final score to 6-8, a loss for the Warriors.

“My highlight was being called up to pitch. I don’t get to [pitch] very much, so it was really exciting to have that chance, especially against Kennesaw Mountain,” Martinez said.

The final game in the series also played at Mustang’s Field, took place on Friday, April 12. The shortest game in the series, Ford kicked off the first inning by scoring a run off of Lovett’s hit. The Warriors continued to demonstrate strong defense and prevented the Mustangs from scoring a run until the fourth inning.

In the fourth inning, the Mustangs scored three runs, which brought the score of the game to 3-1 with the score remaining that way until the end of the game, resulting in another Mustang win.

“I think the team played good defensively throughout the whole series, but we need to work on waking the bats up earlier in the game so we don’t have to try to dig ourselves out of the hole we put ourselves in,” Smith said.

Lainey Devlin
Magnet sophomore Harry Ford scored the first run of the game against the Mustangs. The rival teams fought a competitive battle against each other, and the Warriors look forward to facing off against the Mustangs next season. “It was really exciting to play [the Mustangs]. I know some people on the team that I’ve played with before, so I would say it was more competitive. [My highlight] was scoring the first run of the game in the first inning, I think it showed them what they were up against,” Ford said.
The Warriors, although disappointed by the rival loss, look forward to the last week of region games the week of April 15. The Warriors will play the Hillgrove Hawks at home on Wednesday, April 17 and Thursday, April 18. Senior night for the Warriors, coming up on April 18 celebrates the students who put years of hard work and dedication into the baseball program.