PILOT MOUNTAIN — The East Surry Cardinals softball team swung for victory in matters of the heart and on the home field as it hosted Central Davidson. The night featured a special tribute game during which players wore brightly colored ribbons and Beat Cancer with A Bat T-shirts to raise money for cancer awareness and research.
Pitcher and senior Jessica Barker organized the fundraiser this year along with the support of her teammates, Head Coach Derrick Hill and staff. The Central Davidson Spartans showed their support by purchasing T-shirts and wearing them during the game as well.
The Cards got four runs on the board underscoring the game’s special meaning, and Olivia Sheets ran in the first run of the night with a hit by Kristen Cummings. East Surry finished the game with a 10-2 final score.
The team and staff already had raised more than $2,000 for the cause and more may still be contributed by contacting Angie Smith at East Surry High School.
This is the third year the girls have stuck together to support a cause that is larger than the team itself, and Kaitrell said she hopes that after her daughter graduates, the softball team will continue to carry the torch.
Barker and her mother Andrea Kaitrell started the fundraiser together for R.L. Gordon, Kaitrell’s father and Barker’s grandfather.
Barker took it and ran this year along with her team, after she decided to make the tribute and money-raising before and at the game part of her senior project. Teammates spent elbow grease helping along with the community, and Aunt Bea’s donated catering.
Coach Hill said, “It is a special cause for them and we understand that. In the grand scheme of things, trying to do something to help somebody is always a good thing.”
The Cards scored four runs in bottom of first, then got five in the fifth and one in the sixth. The Spartans got their two in the fourth inning.
Hill said some highlights were Kelsey Wilson going four for four and Amber Lawson going three out of four.
He said, “Jessica Barker pitched extremely well and with a good defense behind her. Also, we had great support from the fans.”
Hill said Central Davidson agreed to buy T-shirts earlier in the season and said the relationship with Central Davidson is a well established one.
“It is always good to win to me, and especially for Jessica. The teammates had her back and helped raise the money and got donations from sponsors. This helps bring our kids together and I am hoping that is what happened tonight.”
East record is 7-4 and will play next Friday at North Stokes.