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Nor'Easters close out solid summer

by Jeff Lajoie
Sports Reporter

The Nor'Easter 16U softball team is shown here earlier this summer after winning the Rochester Slammers Championship. The club recently closed out the summer season with teams in the 12U, 14U and 16U age groups. Courtesy Photo. (click for larger version)
August 11, 2014
REGION With the 2014 Nor'Easter Classic in the rearview, the summer schedule came to a close recently for the three Nor'Easter softball club teams that are made up predominantly of Lakes Region athletes.

"As for our Classic, we had a great day of softball on (day one) and (day two), 64 teams represented from every state in New England," explained Nor'Easter president Fern Beaudet, who also coaches the 16U team. "On (day three), we were able to play our games up through our 11:30 a.m. games, then the rains came along with thunder and lightning which flooded most of the fields.

"The only fields we could salvage were the three fields in Meredith for our 12U division," he continued. "After the Nor'Easter staff determined the fields in Meredith were safe to play knowing there was still lots of work ahead of our volunteers, the 12U volunteers and coaches were determined to see the tourney come to a completion. After lots of hard work preparing the fields, we were able to finish all the games for our 12U division. All in all it was a great weekend of softball even though our 14U, 16U and 18U were cut short on Friday for the first time in the history of our 17 years of our Nor'Easter Classic."

The Nor'Easters fielded three clubs this season, with teams in the 12U, 14U and 16U age groups during the summer.

The 12U team went 1-2 in pool play at the host tournament last month, beating South Maine Frenzy (3-1) for their lone victory. In single elimination draw on Sunday, the team pulled out a solid win over Methuen Blue (9-1) before falling to the Worth Firecracker Red Hots, 6-1.

"The 12U team had a very competitive season playing some of the toughest teams from New England in many of their tournaments," said Beaudet. "The 12U team had many new faces on this year's squad. They started out the season slow but came together as a team towards the end of the season to put together some good quality wins in some tough tournaments."

The 14U team had a tough outing at the Nor'Easter tourney, going 0-3 in pool play before dropping an elimination game to eventual runner-up Bay State Brats.

"Like the 12U team, our 14U team had many new faces with players from towns all around the Lakes Region," Beaudet explained. "With a brand new coaching staff and new players, the 14U team played tough all season even though they ended up with many players with injuries during the season causing them to play shorthanded in many of the tournaments."

The 16U team was unable to find out what might have been in the Nor'Easter Classic, as weather halted their final action. The squad went 1-2 in pool play, beating N.H. Comets White by a 4-2 margin for the win. In elimination bracket play, the squad blanked the NE Diamond Gems White, 7-0, but after two innings against Metrowest Thunder in the next round, weather brought the day to a close with the score 0-0.

"This team had a core of seven players returning and with the addition of five new players, the team jelled really quickly," said Beaudet of the 16U squad he coached. "After only two outdoor practices to start the season, the team was able to win their first tournament, the Rochester Slammers Classic, beating a very tough N.H. Lightning Blue team in the final game, 3-1."

After playing tough in three other tournaments, the 16U Nor'Easter team pulled out a solid outing in the Bow Turn 2 Classic. The club went 2-0-1 in pool play, and they followed that up with three wins on Sunday to earn a berth in the championship game. That run included a 5-4 win over a tough N.H. Comets Blue team in the semifinals (5-4). In the finals, the Nor'Easters dropped what wound up being their fourth game of the day to the Southern Maine Flame, settling for a runner-up berth. All told, the squad compiled a summer record of 16-12-1.

"All and all it was a very enjoyable season for all Nor'Easter teams," said Beaudet. "The Classic was again a success because of all the hard work from all of our Nor'Easter parents and volunteers. A big thank you to all of our parents and volunteers."

The Nor'Easter Club is looking forward to putting together four new competitive teams for 2015, and tryouts were slated to begin last weekend at the Belmont High School softball field. For those who could not attend, there will be a second tryout scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 23 also at BHS. For those interested in trying out, please visit the club's website, www.noreastersoftball.org for more information about tryouts and to download forms for the tryout.

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