Cards have good draws in softball, baseball tournaments

By John Cate -

Coaches from the various baseball and softball teams in the Northwest 1A Conference and the Western Piedmont 2A held their postseason meetings on Saturday morning, and pairings for the upcoming conference tournament were announced early in the afternoon.

While the outcome of these tournament doesn’t affect the status of the regular-season champions of each league, if a school wins a tournament championship from the No. 3 or lower seed, it automatically earns a state playoff berth and assumes the No. 2 playoff seed from that league. The league tournaments will also decide a situations in both leagues where one or more baseball teams tied for the same spot in the regular-season standings.

Northwest Conference

On the baseball side of things, East Surry received a favorable draw for the six-team postseason tournament. The Cardinals, who tied with North Stokes for second place in the conference, drew the No. 2 seed and will therefore join regular-season champion Walkertown in having a first-round bye.

Two opening-round games were scheduled for Monday evening. North Stokes (15-9, 7-3) was the No. 3 seed and hosted No. 6 Atkins (2-16, 0-10) at 5 p.m., while fourth seed Bishop McGuinness (13-8, 4-6) was scheduled to host Mount Airy (2-8, 3-18) at 6:30.

Mount Airy High School will host the semifinals and finals of the tournament. East Surry (14-9, 7-3) will face either North Stokes or Atkins at 4:30 on Wednesday afternoon. Walkertown (18-3, 10-0) will take on the Bishop-Mount Airy winner at 7 that evening. Should, as expected, the Cardinals and Vikings meet in the first semifinal, the game will decide which team receives the league’s No. 2 seed for the NCHSAA 1A playoffs.

The championship game will be played on Friday at 7 p.m.

The NW1A softball draw was more cut and dried, as each team down the line swept the regular-season series from those below it. North Stokes (17-1, 10-0) and East Surry (18-5, 8-2) earned the Nos. 1 and 2 seeds and byes into the semifinals, respectively. However, the Lady Cardinals may have a slight edge in that the semis and finals will be played on their field this season.

Top-seeded North Stokes will await the winner of Monday’s opening round game between fourth-seeded Mount Airy (5-15, 4-6) and Bishop McGuinness (6-14, 2-8). Those teams will play on Monday at 5 p.m. at MAHS. East Surry will face the winner of a first-round game between No. 3 Walkertown (9-14, 6-4) and visiting Atkins (4-18, 0-10), also on Monday at 5.

Semifinals will take place at East Surry on Tuesday evening. North Stokes will play at 5 and the hosts will take the field at 7.

The championship game will be held on Thursday at 7 p.m., also at East Surry.

By John Cate

Reach John via Twitter at @johncate73.

Reach John via Twitter at @johncate73.

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