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Raiders Make Move in NVL softball.

POSTED April 11, 2013
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

Dakotah Manson rounds third en route to a home run during the Torrington Raiders 3-0 win over rival Seymour on Wednesday afternoon in Torrington.

It's always been Seymour....

That one team that the Torrington girls softball team had trouble getting by.

In basketball, Holy Cross was the girls barrier they could never get past, especially in the Tournament.

That changed this past winter as the Raider girls took care of their biggest rival not once or twice but three times en route to a regular season Naugatuck Valley League title and a NVL Tournament title to boot.

On Wednesday at Torrington High School, the Raider girls and head coach Maryanne Musselman did their part by beating a team that had caused them as much pain as any other the past few years.

A 1-0 loss in the NVL Tournament a year ago was the latest heartbreak.

Sydney Matzko, a pitcher we have been watching the past two season blow most teams away, had yet to chalk up a "W" vesrus the team she wanted to beat more than any.

Matzko lives and breathes softball, this young lady works her craft 24-7, 365 in a positive way.

Her pitch selection is sick with upwards of 6 different ways for batters to swing and miss.

All I know is that it looks real hard to hit and from the results so far this season, a lot of NVL batters would tend to agree.

Wednesday, in just the fourth game of the year, Matzko and the Raiders sent a message to the Wildcats and the rest of the NVL.

They can play with anyone. Matzko can shut you down or give up 10 hits as she did against Seymour but you will still have a hard time crossing that elusive plate.

Just ask Seymour.

They had chances, three games worth in some cases.

But each time a rally threatened to put the junior hurler behind the eight-ball, she raised her game to a silly level and simply worked her way out with many of those six pitches.

It was though coming in that errors would make a difference in this one but the odds pointed to the Raiders perhaps making the mistake, based on earlier performances this season.

But it was the visitors who make some very uncharacteristic mental errors, setting up the home teams first run on a lazy throw in from the outfield that found nobody.

A long home run by Dakotah Manson made it 2-0 and a three base error allowed the third run to score on a ball that never went passed the mound.

Now, don't for a minute think Seymour will not be heard from again down the road. That pedigree of winning that is en-grained in the Wildcats mindset will simply not let them go away without a fight.

But for one day, the Raiders have swept away any thoughts that they can't beat the best.

With one of the best on the mound, this could end up being a grand year indeed for the Lady Raiders. 

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