Wiser Lady ‘Cats ready for slowpitch title test

Published 5:00 am Friday, October 21, 2005

BOGUE CHITTO — A year older and wiser, the Bogue Chitto Lady’Cats return to V.A. Fields in Jackson, hunting for a Class 1Astate slowpitch softball championship. The Lady ‘Cats play Myrtle’sLady Hawks in a best-of-three series Saturday, starting at 11a.m.

Opening ceremonies are at 10:15. It will feature introduction ofthe 10 teams and players from all five classifications.

Bogue Chitto (28-3) is under the direction of second-year headcoach Scott Leggett. The ‘Cats have dominated the state playoffs,winning six straight games without a loss.

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“We have managed to play well as a team,” said Leggett. “That’swhat it is all about…teamwork.”

Denise Leggett, his wife and assistant coach, provides plenty ofknowledge and support.

Leggett vividly remembers last year’s state title series againtIngormar. Some of his players were overwhelmed by the setting,especially the large size of the crowd and the noise level, becausefive games were going on simultanelously at one location.

“Being our first time up there, a lot of our girls wereawestruck,” said Leggett. “They had never been in that situationbefore.

“Now we know what to expect,” Leggett continued. “The atmosphereis different. There are four games going on, the same side of road,at one time. The 5A games are on the other side of the road.”

Leggett said his girls learned a lesson. “What we learned is,don’t pressure yourself. It’s just like any other game. We have toplay fundamentals and make the routine plays.”

Leggett scouted the Ingomar-Myrtle North state championsihpseries last year and he was impressed by both teams. “I saw Ingomarplay Myrtle last year. They have a pretty good group.”

Only three close setbacks have marred BC’s record this season.Those losses were to Class 4A and 5A schools. BC lost to LawrenceCounty in eight innings, 6-5. The Lady ‘Cats also lost toBrookhaven 1-0 and to Pearl 9-6.

Shortstop Meleah Brown is BC’s only senior. She’s batting ateam-best .541, with 54 RBIs and 6 homers.

“I think we are playing together,” said Brown, when asked abouther team’s success. “Everybody is doing their part to win. We arehitting more in practice this year.”

Brown said the ‘Cats must be focused tomorrow. “We have to hitthe ball and not make any errors on defense. I think we’ll berewarded.”

Sophomore right-centerfielder Chelsey Miller (.519) leads theteam in homers with 16. She has 48 RBIs.

Also in BC’s starting lineup are left-centerfielder CandaceAvants (.422), leftfielder Kelli Howard (.495), pitcher LatoyaBraxton (.400), second baseman Devon Welch (.427), first basemanDori Hall (.395), third baseman Jessie Miller (.430), catcherShaquille Burton (.400) and rightfielder Caitlin Owen (.354).

Braxton, a right-hander, has fashioned a 26-3 record on themound. She has 24 strikeouts and 22 walks to her credit.