BA trio inks with Co-Lin softball

Published 9:00 am Saturday, December 11, 2021

When Co-Lin hired Meleah Howard to take over the softball program in the summer of 2018, the CLCC alum started spending a lot of her time working towards 2022 — the class of 2022 specifically.

Keeping the softball talent in that class playing at home for Co-Lin was high on the new coach’s to-do list.

That goal got a checkmark beside it last recently when Brookhaven Academy seniors Bailee Goodson, Madison Moak and Abby Grace Richardson made their longtime verbal commitments official by signing letters-of-intent with Co-Lin.

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All three were MAIS All-State and All-Star performers for BA coach Becky Flowers this season. They powered their team to a 32-6-1 record and a MAIS 5A State Championship — the first in school history.

Goodson is a model in versatility — the type of player that Howard will be able to plug in wherever the team needs her most as a utility player. As a senior she hit for a .431 average while playing in the middle infield. Goodson led BA with 13 doubles and had a team high 58 runs driven in on the year.

Moak is what every coach would want in a leadoff hitter. Her stats seem downright gaudy for 2021 as she had a team best 78 hits, posted a .605 batting average and struck out just three times in 150 plate appearances. The speediest player on the team, Moak covered tons of ground for BA in center field.

Richardson was a powerplant with the bat all season for the Lady Cougars. She hit a career high 19 home runs and drove in 50 runs as a senior. Richardson saw just a couple hittable pitches each game as she finished with a team high 53 walks — most of them coming intentionally from the opposing coaching staff. In the field, Richardson is a seldom run-upon catcher.

“We are ecstatic about Abby Grace, Bailee and Madison joining our pack next year,” said Howard. “Four years ago, when I accepted the job at Co-Lin, I knew immediately that these young ladies were a very important part of the future success of our program. I’m grateful to have that relationship with them. To know these three is to love them and I’m so grateful that I get to be a part of this next chapter of their lives and careers.”

Those three aren’t the only seniors from Co-Lin’s seven county footprint that Howard has signed. CLCC has also picked up signatures from seniors Kat Case of Lawrence County, Sarah Grace Smith of Copiah Academy and Zykeria Cole of Simpson Academy.

Co-Lin has a solid local contingent on this season’s roster as well. Brookhaven High alum Maddi Miller, Loyd Star product Malori Cade and Wesson grad Shelbi Maxwell are sophomores on the team. Freshman from local schools include Abeni Fuller (Lawrence County), Skyler Speights (Lawrence County) and Julianna Frazier (Bogue Chitto).

Co-Lin went 32-11 last season and if the fall results are any indicator, the potential is there for another big year in 2022.

The Lady Wolves opened up their fall play in late September by sweeping Mississippi College, Millsaps and Grambling State in Clinton. The team then went to Hattiesburg where they split two games with the University of Southern Mississippi.

CLCC dropped a close 2-1 loss in Oxford to Ole Miss and finished the fall schedule with a pair of games in Baton Rouge in late October. The team beat Pensacola State College and lost 1-0 to LSU in a nail biter.

Two of Howard’s 2022 signees hail from Louisiana in pitchers Laney Waguespack from Hahnville High (Boutte, La.) and Karleigh Soileau from St. Edmund Catholic (Eunice, La.).

Rounding out the 2022 signing class for Co-Lin are Leia Phillips of Choctaw Central, Jenna Chamblee of Leake Academy, Cara Biswell of Brandon High and Ellie Williamson of Tri-County Academy.

Howard and her team open the 2022 season on Feb. 13 when they’ll host Baton Rouge Community College for a pair of games.