Panthers, Sharks finding offense early in softball season


It has been roughly 10 games into the softball season and Nease and Ponte Vedra high schools both have winning records but also continue to search for that consistency that will be needed to make and do damage in the playoffs.

The Panthers are 5-4 and are fresh off a 8-1 win over county rival Bartram Trail on March 21.

So far this season, if the Panthers offense is on they can not just win, but do so handily, but they have also experienced their share of games where the bats have not quite shown up.

In the five Panthers’ victories this season, they have scored an average of 10.4 runs but in their four losses they have only mustered 2.2 runs in those contests. And those contests have come against strong opponents such as Mandarin (8-3) and Paxon (6-4).

When it comes to producing runs, senior Taylor Burton has been a key contributor for the Panthers, as she leads the team with 10 RBIs on the season, including seven doubles and one home run.

Fellow senior Corinna Cioffi is not far behind with nine runs driven in, with two of those coming as a result of the long ball.

If the Panthers can maintain that offensive prowess but make it a little more consistent they will be a dangerous team in the second half of the schedule.

Down the road, the Sharks have also made some noise with their bats this year, having scored double digits in three games so far but have also had the pitching to back it up with a pair of shutouts.

One of the pitching bright spots for the Sharks is sophomore Aoife Weaver, who has a record of 3-2 on the season with a 3.32 earned run average, including a complete game shutout.

She has proved time and time again this season that she has a lot of versatility as a player, as she also leads the squad with 16 hits and 14 RBIs and has a batting average of .412 to go with four stolen bases.

Junior Alaina Daughtry has combined with Weaver to create quite the hitting combo, as she sits second on the team in the majority of hitting stats with 10 hits, 13 RBIs and an average of .312 at the plate.

The Sharks have only played five of their first 13 games at home to start the season, so they are looking for some more home cooking, as they will have six of their last 11 in front of the home fans.

Nease Panthers, Ponte Vedra Sharks, softball