Emily Jordan: News-Argus Softball Player of the Year
By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on June 22, 2008 2:03 AM
Charles B. Aycock hurler Emily Jordan dominated in the pitcher's circle, contributed at the plate and showed her leadership throughout the 2008 softball season.
The Methodist University signee took a young team on her shoulders and helped guide it to yet another Class 3-A Eastern Carolina Conference regular-season and tournament crown.
For her efforts, the Golden Falcon senior has been named the 2008 News-Argus All-Area Softball Player of the Year.
Jordan recorded 16 wins while tallying 134 strikeouts and maintaining a minuscule 0.39 earned run average. And while those numbers provide a barometer for postseason accolades, first-year Aycock coach Brad Matthews says Jordan is separated by characteristics that can't be considered statistics.
"She is the single most competitive player I have ever coached," Matthews said. "And that is something that I can't teach. Her mentality on the field is remarkable."
Jordan made quick light of her demeanor.
"I don't care if we are racing to the mailbox and back, I want to win," said Jordan, who was named the ECC player of the year. "That's the way I am when I'm playing. I try to block out the crowd, and not listen to anything so I can stay focused and keep my mind on the hitter."
No matter the level of talent, no pitcher can be successful without a solid defense in the field and support at the plate. Jordan got both from her Aycock teammates, a group that has become exceedingly close during their high school careers.
"We all worked together, partially because some of us have been playing together since the third grade," said Jordan. "We had a young team this year, but we worked hard and played together."
Along with her supporting cast on the field, Jordan also recognized the efforts of Matthews and the Golden Falcon coaching staff.
"He really helped me with preparation, and going over what each hitter had done in previous games," said Jordan. "He kept a sheet on almost every hitter, and he knew how are defense should look during each at-bat."
In a season filled with individual memories, one game stood above all the rest for the fourth-year pitcher. A mid-season, 15-inning affair with Wilson Beddingfield that will be part of Golden Falcon softball lore for years to come.
"It probably wasn't our best game, but it was certainly the most memorable because of how long it took and how sore I was afterward," said Jordan. "It was also important because it was the turning point of our season."
Jordan heads to Methodist in the fall.
"We have our workouts and the coach is keeping up with us, so I am starting to get excited," said Jordan. "I know it's going to be more work, and more time consuming, but I am definitely looking forward to getting started."
Matthews knows he is losing his ace, but gaining credibility for his program at Aycock thanks to her success.
"Every player wants to follow in Emily's footsteps and do what she has done at the high school level," said Matthews. "Having players that are able to advance to the college game is certainly a good sign for the program.
"We are certainly going to miss Emily, but it has been a pleasure to work with such a great player and nice young woman."
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