Two first-year Georgia Perimeter College coaches had successful runs in the 2013 spring season.
Ken Dayton overcame early-season struggles to lead the Georgia Perimeter softball team through the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association tournament. The Jaguars won the championship, earning a spot in the nationals held Monday through Saturday.
Led by Dayton the GPC softball team went 5-11 when it began GCAA play on March 22, with eight of those losses coming to teams ranked in the nation’s top 10. However, the Jaguars then went 16-3 from March 22 on, finishing 13-3 in the GCAA.
Sweeping through the conference double-elimination tournament in three games by outscoring opponents 14-2, the Jaguars (21-4) won the title game 4-0 over Middle Georgia State College. Freshman ace Lyndsey Pardon pitched the shutout, her fourth of the season (one was a perfect game), and she tossed the other two tournament victories.
Parden was named tournament MVP, and Savannah Cook, Abbie Hulsey (freshman) and Jessie Romines joined her on the all-tournament team.
The only Jaguar to make the all-conference first team was Parden, but Madison Case, Samantha Maycock, Maegan Coddington (freshman) and pitcher Jenna Carr (freshman) were named to the second team. Deyton was named GCAA Coach of the Year.
The roster, which includes reserve Alexsis Fields of Monticello and Jasper County H.S., also includes freshman Barbara Rego, who leads the team with a .375 batting average.
Fans can watch live video webcasts of all games at the national tournament in St. George, Utah, by clicking on the links under “Game Webcasts” at www.gpc.edu/athletic.
Brett Campbell led the Georgia Perimeter College baseball team to a regular-season conference championship and a spot in the district tournament, running Thursday through Saturday, where they will be three wins away from the NJCAA World Series.
The baseball team, 36-17 overall, won the GCAA regular-season title with a 25-6 league record.
The Jaguars did it by winning 17 consecutive games and sweeping four straight four-game series against GCAA conference foes.
With the first-place finish came an automatic berth in the East-Central District tournament in Morristown, Tenn., May 16-18. The winner of that double-elimination event, featuring two teams from Georgia and two from Tennessee, will advance to the NJCAA College World Series in Grand Junction, Colo.
The Jaguars were eliminated from the GCAA tournament in Albany, but they’d already won the trip to Morristown.
Four of the GCAA’s top eight pitchers are Jaguars and four of the top 15 hitters.
Sam Bragg finished second in the GCAA with an 1.08 ERA in conference games. Nikolay Uherek ranks fourth (1.76), Landon Hayes seventh (2.03) and Dawson Brown eighth (2.05).
Russell Melton led the GCAA in batting with a .456 average, and Trumon Jefferson ranks second at .430. Freshmen Erik Davis (.367) and Pierce Ressmeyer (.343) are eighth and 15th, respectively.
All district tournament games will be audio webcast live with links under “Game Webcasts” at www.gpc.edu/athletic.
Find standings, statistics and box scores for all sports at the GCAA website: thegcaa.com.
In other GPC spring sports, the women’s tennis team finished fifth at the National Junior College Athletic Association national tournament, the men’s team is attending the national tournament this week and both won their conference tournaments.