Braden River High senior Courtney Mirabella allowed two hits and struck out 12 in six innings to lead the Lady Pirates to a 10-0 victory over Manatee March 5. She also went 3-for-4 at the plate with four RBIs.
It was Mirabella’s third time facing the Hurricanes this season. In their previous meeting, Mirabella pitched a perfect game.
Mirabella followed up her performance with a save in Braden River’s 4-2 12th-inning victory over Sarasota March 8. It was Mirabella’s second save of the season.
"I was forced to be a pitcher. Our pitcher got hurt, and I was actually a catcher at the time. My coach said, “Hey Courtney, you’re going to be our pitcher.” And I said, “OK, sure. Why not?”
You get blamed a lot when you lose, but I like the pressure and always having the ball in my hand.
Even if I’m not pitching my best, I try to get the outs. I try not to be selfish about it and get down on myself. I just always try to get my team out of the inning.
I’ll (never forget) my first TV game with the Gold Coast Hurricanes. I came on in the fifth inning. We were down, and we were playing a really good team. I pitched us out of it, and we won.
I miss catching. It’s just fun. I like being in the dirt. Pitchers — we are treated like princesses.
It’s just exciting knowing no one got a hit off you. It’s hard to achieve (a perfect game) every time. But it also puts a target on your back.
I love pressure. I handle it well. I stay calm. I don’t get freaked out a lot. It keeps the game interesting. My mom gets mad at me (though) for pressure situations, because then she can’t watch because she’s so nervous. "