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Co-Lin launches fastpitch season

WESSON – A new era begins for Copiah-Lincoln Community CollegeThursday when the Lady Wolves unveil their first-ever fastpitchsoftball team in a 1 p.m. doubleheader at Jones County CommunityCollege in Ellisville.

The Lady Wolves will be under the direction of David Smith, nowin his ninth year as head softball coach at the institution. Duringhis tenure Smith, who has compiled an overall record of 183-83 atCo-Lin, guided the Lady Wolves to two State Tournament titles andfive South Division titles, all in slowpitch softball. His 2000squad completed the last season of collegiate slowpitch softballwith the highest finish of any MACJC team ever, a second place spotin the National Tournament in Decatur, Ala.

Only four sophomores dot the 2001 edition. They include firstbaseman Stephanie Brown of Magee, outfielder Sarah Reynolds ofFlorence, outfielder/first baseman Christy Wallace of Bogue Chittoand Tamara West, an outfielder/catcher from Monticello.

“This year will definitely be a new venture for many of ourplayers because the Co-Lin district currently has more high schoolswhich don’t play fastpitch than those who do,” said Smith.

Smith said those schools were attempting to start fastpitchprograms in the near future.”This is very encouraging for thefuture of our Lady Wolves team,” he said.

Smith noted that this year’s team has a few players withexperience, including twins Janet and Jenny Chapman, ashortstop-second base duo from Franklin County.

“They do an excellent job as middle infielders,” he added.

Smith dipped down into Louisiana and came up with freshmanpitchers Rachel Bergold of Denham Springs, La. and Mary Wingate ofRosepine, La.

Other team members expected to contribute are all freshmen. Theyare outfielder Tiffany Coquat of Monticello; shortstop/outfielderRomie Fuller of Ruth; outfielder Tonya Johns of Bogue Chitto; firstbaseman/outfielder Doya Langston of Magee; outfielder Heather Mackof Roxie; catcher/outfielder Kristi Moak of Brookhaven; thirdbaseman Davina Sandifer of Crystal Springs; and outfielder/thirdbaseman Gwen Smith of Wesson.

“I have to attribute our success over the past eight years tothe outstanding quality of athletes from our district and the helpof my assistant coach Johnny Williams,” said Smith. “This team isvery young and with limited experience in fastpitch.

“We lost some good ones in third baseman Kit Brashier, TammyCase, Amanda Bass and Jamie Errington, and they will be hard toreplace. It’ll be a very interesting season.”

2001 Co-Lin Schedule

MARCH: 1 At Jones, 3 – Kickoff Classic Tourney at Hattiesburg, 8- Jones, 20 – Pearl River, 24 – At Southwest, 26 – At Jones, 28 -East Central.

APRIL: 4 – Gulf Coast, 7 – At Hinds, 11 – At Pearl River, 17 -Southwest, 21 – Jones, 24 – At East Central, 28 – At Gulf Coast,30, Hinds.

MAY: 5 – State Tournament (TBA), 11-12 – Regional Tournament(TBA).