Shawn Garrett is coaching his final season with the Nor'Easters this summer and said he was very pleased with the effort and sportsmanship of his squad.
Bob Martin. (click for larger version)
July 31, 2017CONCORD — The Nor'Easters 16U softball team had its ups and downs this summer, but coach Shawn Garrett said he has been pleased with the progression of the team and that there was steady improvement throughout the short season.
The team had a tough going in the Nor'Easter Classic that took place July 21-23, only winning one game in pool play, but Garrett said it has been a great summer for his softball squad, which included several girls from Lakes Region high schools.
This year's squad consists of players from seven different high schools, coming from as far away as Vermont. Coming from Lakes Region Schools included Taylor Morrell of Laconia and Liz Fleming of Belmont. Garrett was the coach of the junior varsity softball team at Gilford High School, and attracted a number of players from his school including Tricia Jarry, Emily Smith, Randi Byars, Nicole Daigneault and Karly Sanborn. Jade LaSalle represents Inter-Lakes High School, and Garrett said she has done an outstanding job on the mound.
Garrett said the Nor'Easter Classic was great for the team to play in front of the home crowd, but he had wished the team had fared better as they went 1-3.
Garrett said on Friday night the team came out cold, but on Saturday they came out with more energy and beat the New England Legacy 5-3 for their only win.
"We played some good ball after Friday night," said Garrett.
Friday's loss was 5-0 to the Barrington Blaze. They won 5-3 on Saturday in the first game against the Legacy, but then lost to the Xplosion 9-3.
In a bizarre incident, the team lost a game against the New England Storm that they technically should have won due to a scorekeeping snafu. Garrett explained that on Sunday the normal parents that do the book were selling t-shirts and working fields, so he had a player doing the book.
He said in the bottom of the seventh inning the game should have been 4-3 in favor of the Nor'Easters, but the player who was doing the book went up to bat and never marked a runner that scored. So instead, the game stayed at 3-3.
This led to a 4-3 loss for the Nor'Easters in extra innings, and it cut the tournament short for the Nor'Easters.
"I take responsibility for that," said Garrett. "It was just a strange thing. Definitely a first."
In last weekend's Caroline Farley Tournament, the Nor'Easters didn't fare well by going 0-4. He said they played the Comets, a 14U team that has been playing beyond belief. They beat the Nor'Easters 16-0 and Garrett said they scored 47 runs in three games. The Comets were undefeated this summer.
"They are really something else," said Garrett. "I've never seen anything like it playing at a level two years higher."
The Saturday games were 8-7 and 4-3 losses, and Garrett said the team played well but just not well enough to win. The final game was a 9-4 loss, and again, Garrett said they had a good game but couldn't come away with a win.
"They hit well," said Garrett. "It wasn't like we fell apart. They just got their base hits and capitalized."
Garrett said the team has had an up and down summer. They have had great pitching but there have been some errors in the field. However, he said he was happy with the overall effort put in by his squad, and most of all he was happy about their sportsmanship.
"Every single game, but one, we had players and coaches from other teams pulling us aside to tell us how great the sportsmanship was," said Garrett. "I even had a grandma tell me. You just don't get that all the time. That is something that makes a coach proud."