High School Softball

EC's June games help prepare for upcoming campaign

by Doug Gorman

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East Coweta softball player Shamiah Sanchez fields the ball in a game last year. She returns to the Lady Indians program after earning all-county honors last season. Sanchez has spent the summer playing in some international events. 

The East Coweta softball team only gets together once a week in the month of June, but the Tuesday morning sessions could go a long way in helping the team recapture its winning ways.

Although they made it to the second round of the Class AAAAAA tournament last year, it was a disappointing season by East Coweta softball standards as the squad failed to make it to the Elite 8 in Columbus for the first time in eight years.

The Lady Indians ended their Tuesday morning exhibition schedule with a scrimmage against Northgate, but more important than the scoreboard was the opporunity to bond before the start of the season in August.

'It's great that we can get together with Northgate and Newnan once a week and we can stay in touch with our players,' said East Coweta head coach Franklin DeLoach. 'We are able to talk about somethings. Say, hey, we made a mistake here.' DeLoach admits the summer is a good time to work on the fundamentals and to go over some situations that need to be corrected before the season starts.

'When August gets here, before you know it, you have played five games. The high school season is so fast this gives us a chance to do things in a relaxed mode,' he said. 'It's a non-stress mode, you are not worrying so much about the end result. The girls are able to process the game and talk about the game before the season starts in a much more laid back environment.'

Most of the Lady Indians are also playing at a high level with their travel ball teams.

'That's why we use these Tuesday morning sessions,' DeLoach said. 'We try not to get in the way of their travel season. If a girl is worn down, they just come hang out with us. For us, 50 percent of this is just being together.'

Among those returning is shortstop Shemiah Sanchez. Sanchez is playing international softball for Puerto Rico again this year and hasn't been to the Tuesday morning sessions, but she will be an important part of the team's plans after hitting .350 with 27 RBIs as a junior.

Sanchez has already committed to LSU. Infielder Lauren Liebe made the all-county team last year after batting .340 with 24 RBIs. She played four positions for DeLoach's squad in 2013.

Power hitting Katy Lynch returns to the outfield after hitting .467 with five home runs.

Hai ley Baswel l, who showed she could catch and play the outfield a year ago, is back along with outfield Makhia Freeman and designated hitter Maggie Morrow.

Pitcher Morgan Goree matured during the season, turning in some solid performances from the mound, especially late in the year.



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