MOULTRIE — The 2009 Colquitt County girls softball team posted the best record since the school began playing fast-pitch and the quest to improve on that 17-10-1 record will begin with scrimmage against Worth County at 5 p.m. Monday at Packer Park.
Lady Packers coach Carman Phillips said some 60 girls in grades 8-12 tried out this year.
Phillips called it “a great turnout and made me excited that so many girls are interested and are playing softball.
“We are looking forward to a great year and all of the girls have been working really hard to make this a great season.”
The Lady Packers must replace two All-Region players in outfielder Brooke Hood, who was named to the elite squad three times, and shortstop Kaley Clark.
But there is strong nucleus returning.
The 14-member varsity team has just three seniors: catcher Anna Laura Beason, left fielder Stephanie Blair and first baseman Kaytlyne Jarvis.
But it has three talented freshmen, too, in pitcher-third baseman Ainsley Davis, second baseman Taylor Owens and infielder Cheyenne Sumner.
The rest of the roster includes juniors T.K. Courtney, center field; Blanco Fuentes, right field; Hannah Hancock, pitcher; Meagan May, third base; Allie McCracken, outfield; and Jordan Taylor, catcher and infield.
The two sophomores are catcher/outfielder Kayla Bynum and shortstop Shameka Reynolds.
Phillips and her staff will count on Hancock to handle the majority of the pitching duties this season.
They also are looking forward to having May in the lineup for a third straight season.
An All-Region selection as a freshman and as a sophomore, May added 51 points to her batting average last year to finish at .354.
She also scored 19 runs, drove in eight and had four doubles.
May also is an outstanding defensive third baseman.
The Colquitt County junior varsity team this season will include Bynum, McCracken, Davis, Ashleigh Childs, Makayli Crawford, Amie Frazier, Ansleigh Lindsey, Savannah Morgan, Antoinette Myers, Cheyenne Reynolds, Tremyia Robinson, Hannah Sprayberry, Maiya Thompson, Kasie Ricks, Cheyenne Sumner and Cheyenne Tillman.
The Gray team, made up of eighth- and ninth-graders, includes Ricks, Sumner, Tillman, Lindsey Oxley, Shelby Rakestraw, Morgan Boyd, Diana Durham, Alex Gibbs, Kerri Owens, Madison Robinson, Chazmin Singletary and Hayli Spradley.
The varsity team will play its regular-season opener on Aug. 19 at Cook and will take part in a tournament in Douglas on Aug. 20-21.
The first regular-season home game will be Thursday, Sept. 9, when Valdosta travels to Packer Park for Colquitt County’s Region 1-AAAAA opener.
The Gray team and junior varsity team will open next Thursday at home against Berrien. The Gray team will play at 4 p.m.; the JV at 5:45 p.m.