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Redd worried but Lady Bears grew

West Lincoln coach Andrew Redd was worried about how his youngplayers would respond. No need to worry because Redd’s four newstarters rose to the occasion and helped lead the West Lincoln LadyBears to the South State 1A finals.

For his team’s accomplishments, Redd has been selected The DailyLeader’s Co-Coach of the Year on the All-Area Slowpitch SoftballTeam. His Lady Bears finished 19-10, runners-up to Union in theSouth State finals.

“After last year we went 23-8 and went to the South Statesemifinals where we lost to Ninah Waiya,” said Redd. “We graduatedfour starters and I was apprehensive. I didn’t know what toexpect.”

To say the least, Redd was pleasantly surprised. His Lady Bearswon the Division 7-1A championship for the first time in his threeyears at the helm. They overcame a rocky start when they lost fourof the first five games they played.

“We had a team meeting before division play started,” Reddrecalled. “I said, ‘Our season starts all over again. Those firstgames don’t count.’

“We had leaders step up and we started hitting. We had someyounger girls who really stepped up. This is probably the bestoverall group of girls I’ve coached.”

Redd, 34, has compiled a 3-year record of 62-25. Division 7-1Aprovides some of the strongest competition in South Mississippi.Bogue Chitto, Enterprise and West Lincoln are the dominantteams.

“Our division is one of the most competitive in the state,” saidRedd. “You consider yourself fortunate to make it out. There havebeen one or two runs separating first, second and third place.”

A standout centerfielder during his high school years at WestLincoln, Redd had a special love for baseball at abasketball-minded school. He won the Golden Glove Award as a seniorand graduated in 1986.

Redd attended Copiah-Lincoln Community College and MississippiState University where he graduated in 1990 with a degree in matheducation and a minor in physics and physical science. He obtainedhis master’s degree in school administration from MississippiCollege in 1996.

During his days at MSU, Redd watched many Bulldog baseballgames. His first job was at Wesson in 1991, where he helped coachthe baseball team.

In 1998, Redd moved to West Lincoln where he taught high schoolmath and took over the baseball program. When Jack Case retiredthree years ago, Redd began coaching softball.

He loses only two seniors to graduation in pitcher Hanna Robertsand shortstop Dana King. Prospects for the future look bright.

“We lost four good hitters last year but we had a better defenseand faster runners coming back,” said Redd. “Defense pulled us outof a lot of games.”

His assistant coach is Nita Wilson who coaches the fastpitchteam.

Redd is married to the former Camille Spencer of Fulton. Theyhave three daughters; Micah, age 6, is the “team’s manager and goodluck charm.” Makennah is 3 and Maddox 1. The family belongs toJohnson Grove Church of Christ.