Devereaux, Tierney spark 3-0 start

Published 1:59 pm Thursday, March 19, 2015

By Brian Pitts

Davie Enterprise Record

In the Davie softball team’s season opener, Anna Devereaux reached base three times and swiped two bags. In the second game, she doubled and homered. In the third game, she laced a double.

In the first game, Bridgett Tierney had two hits. In the second game, she went 4 for 4. (She didn’t play in the third game due to injury.)

Oh, and by the way: Both are freshmen.

Davie’s freshman/sophomore class is pretty special, and there’s plenty of upperclassmen talent to go with it. Dawn Lowery’s start as varsity coach got off to a 3-0 bang as Davie no had trouble dispatching South Iredell, Reagan and South Stokes last week.

Davie is 3-0 for the first time in six years (2009).

“This year is very interesting because my lineup will probably change every game,” Lowery said. “I have a full team of solid hitters, and whoever’s bat is hottest at the time will determine where they bat. A lot of the girls can play multiple positions, and that gives us a lot more options, too.”

In the opener at South Iredell, Sarah Myers pitched a complete-game shutout and Tierney (2 for 3), Makenzie Smith (2-4, two RBIs, two doubles) and Myers (2-2, three RBIs) had multiple hits as Davie romped 11-0 in six innings.

Devereaux singled and twice was hit by pitches. Jessie Beck singled and had two sacrifices. Kelsey Brown doubled. And Lindsey Custer singled and had two RBIs as Davie produced 10 hits.

“This was a great opener,” Lowery said. “We really focussed on setting the tone for the season. Our defense looked sharp and our bats were very consistent throughout the game. I was proud of the girls because we beat South Iredell the way we should have beat them. We didn’t let them hang around. We jumped on them quick and continued to win every inning.”

Against Myers, only one runner reached third, and only three got to second. “Myers looked great,” Lowery said. “The movement on her ball is nasty.”

The next game was the Central Piedmont Conference opener for Davie and visiting Reagan. The Raiders still have never beaten the War Eagles, who never trailed in a 7-3 win.

Here’s the stunning part: The top five batters in the order are freshman (Deveraux), freshman (Tierney), sophomore (Jessie Beck), sophomore (Brown) and sophomore (Smith).

Devereaux and Tierney hardly look like freshmen, with Deveraux going 2 for 4 with a double and home run and Tierney going 4 for 4.

“Deveraux is just a natural athlete,” Lowery said. “You can’t teach some of the stuff she does. She’s aggressive at the plate and on the bases, not to mention lights out in left field.”

An over-the-fence homer is a remarkable feat for someone who was playing in their second high-school game.

“I knew when it hit the bat that it was gone,” Lowery said. “In her next at-bat, I thought she hit another one. It was about to be one for the history books. As leadoff, she has a lot of pressure on her, but she doesn’t back down from that. Her confidence and demeanor is not something you find in most freshmen.”

Tierney’s 6-for-7 start to her high-school career is big-time stuff.

“She has come a long way,” Lowery said. “She is very versatile and can slap, bunt or hit to get on base. She is learning how to read the defense and put the ball where it needs to go. Her speed is a huge weapon. It’s been a long time since someone has had more than one or two at-bats and batted 1.000 (in a game), much less a freshman.”

Unfortunately, Tierney fractured a thumb in the next practice while diving for a ball in the outfield. “She goes this week to get more info on how long she will be out,” Lowery said.

Beck rapped a pair of doubles. Brown singled and doubled, while Smith and Myers had one double each.

Olivia Boger (four innings) and Myers (three) combined on a five-hitter. “Boger pitched great,” she said. “She has put a lot of work and time into the offseason and it is very apparent.”

A home nonconference game with South Stokes brought another strong effort from the War Eagles, who won 5-0.

Davie is so deep that it rolled through the first two games without outfielder McKenzie Barneycastle. The sophomore returned from injury, batted second in the order and promptly went 3 for 4 with a triple.

Beck went 3 for 4 with two steals. K’lea Parks went 2 for 3. Davie got one hit from Devereaux, Smith and Sierra Ferguson.

“Beck has been very consistent at the plate,” she said. “She has really done a great job in the three-hole because she can lay down a bunt or hit for power. She’s been effective and I don’t think she has really even hit it 100-percent solid yet.

“Parks came alive, hitting two rockets up the middle. She is one of the strongest girls on the team. I’m not going to lie, when she gets hold of the ball, I’m worried she might hurt someone.”

Davie outhit South Stokes 11-2 as Boger (four innings) and Myers (three) shared the pitching duties. Boger faced the minimum in the second and fourth, and Myers retired six of the final seven batters.

“It was an all-around solid game,” Lowery said. “(But)we left too many runners on base.”

The best part to Lowery was two double plays. Shortstop Parks and second baseman Smith turned one, and third baseman Beck started the other one.

“At this level it’s not easy to get a double play,” she said. “You can tell Parks and Smith have played together for a while now. And Beck is playing out of position at third and holding her own. She turned one (double play) that looked like she’s been playing there for years.”