COVINGTON, Ga. — It was around this time last season that the Alcovy softball program was looking to continue their diamond dominance, both in their region, and overall.
However, the season took a turn for the worst, leading to a disappointing 1-18 season just one year removed from a 10-0 region record from 2015.
This time around, the torch of traditional excellence has fallen into the hands of head coach, Kelli Wesley, who looks to return the team to prominence with a potential momentum building win against Cedar Grove on Thursday at 5 p.m. — the first game in Wesley’s tenure.
“Right now, we’re just going through the fundamentals and executing those and that we’re good in certain situations,” Wesley said, as she prepares her team for their season opener. “We want to be able to anticipate what’s going to happen next.”
An all-summer practice regiment has produced visible signs of progress, clearly seen by first-year coach.
“We definitely have seen some improvement, and we’ve been conditioning all summer,” she said. “You can see the growth, and you can see that they’re stronger and possess more speed, more strength and more skill.”
Wesley noted that these attributes really stand out in certain players, including junior, Corley Thacker, who says that as a leader she looks to support and encourage her team in any way possible.
“My goal is to be a great asset to the team and be a leader for the younger girls to look up to,” Thacker said. “Our team goal is to not only win games, but have a great team effort.”
Wesley said her personal goal for the team was to see growth and development from each player as well as obtaining a higher skill level throughout the season.
As the season kicks off tomorrow, both Wesley and Thacker echoed the same readiness on behalf of the team, as a win in their first game could put Alcovy back on track for early season momentum that could begin to snowball from game to game.
“Tomorrow we are going to try our best and work together as a team,” Thacker said.
This attitude seemed to be dispersed through the field among all the players as they prepared for the game the day before, which brings confidence to Wesley and how her team will fare Thursday.
“They should be ready,” Wesley said. “We are a new team, and we have some things to work on, but they should be able to compete. I’m looking to keep that tradition of being a historically good team going.”
After Thursday’s Cedar Grove matchup, the Lady Tigers will travel to Morgan County and Rockdale County Monday (5:30 p.m.) and Tuesday (5 p.m.).