The Whitley County Lady Colonels go into the 2018 softball season still in a rebuilding mode under second year Coach Angela Singleton, but look poised with several returning players and starters to potentially improve significantly from last season.
“We are still going to be a little young this year,” Singleton said. “I think having a young team is great, especially when you are trying to rebuild a program and progress. I think we are going to surprise some folks this year.”
Last season, a young Lady Colonels team finished the season with a 7-18 record, including and 0-7 mark in 50th District play.
The Lady Colonels only lose two seniors from last year’s squad, Destiny Kinder and Allison Minton.
“They both played a little bit of left field for us and caught a little bit. We have some underclassmen that I look to step up and compete for those roles of catching and left field for us this year,” she said adding that at this stage it is too early to tell who will be assuming those roles.
The first official day of spring practice and tryouts was about two weeks ago.
Singleton said the goal for this season is to close the gap between her team and the rest of the district and to obviously win a few more ballgames.
“We met that goal last year. We won more games than the season before. The girls have been working hard in the off season and we are going to keep progressing forward,” she said.
Singleton said this year’s squad has a good mix of seniors, juniors, sophomores and freshman.
“We are excited to have those back and to keep progressing forward. They are hard workers, dedicated and willing to do whatever we ask of them. They have a good work ethic underneath them. We are excited for the season,” she said.
Singleton said she thinks team leadership will be spread throughout the team this season.
“We have quite a few returners that have stepped up in the offseason and put in an awful lot of work. I look for quite a few things from quite a few different players,” she said.
Pitching looks to be a strongpoint this year.
The team has one transfer player that Singleton thinks can help them at that position. In addition, the returning pitching staff also put in put in a lot of work in the offseason.
“They progressed tremendously, and the offense has come a long way in terms of being able to battle deep in the count,” she said.
This year’s schedule looks to be a busy one for the Lady Colonels.
“We are going to play an awful lot of games starting with a couple of scrimmages with Middlesboro and Oneida, Tennessee. Then we are going to open up with Knox. We are going to play Lynn Camp. Obviously district rivals Corbin, South Laurel, and Williamsburg. We are going to Clay, Middlesboro, Wayne, and Southern Pulaski,” Singleton said.
“We are just really excited to see what the girls can put together in the season with all the hard work they have put together in the offseason.”