Gatewood softball searches for consistency
The Gatewood varsity softball team is the youngest varsity team in the Gatewood athletic department.
The Lady Gators start two eighth-graders, two freshmen, three sophomores, two juniors and no seniors. Despite its inexperience, the team has shown signs of improvement.
The Lady Gators opened region play on Sept. 6 against the Flint River Wildcats. The Gators put up a season-high nine runs in a losing effort to the Wildcats.
Sophomore Lyla Davis started the game, as she has every game, in the circle for the Gators. The Wildcat offense eventually overwhelmed the Gator defense, plating 19 runs by the end of the contest. The Gators did not go down quietly, though, as they scored nine runs of their own against the Wildcats.
The Gators have yet to come out of a game victorious; despite giving their best efforts, their overall record has fallen to 0-11 and 0-1 in region play.
The Gator’s schedule thus far has been brutal, with several of their games being against teams that made a deep run into the 2017 playoffs.
“Our schedule prior to beginning region play has been very tough – Windsor, Briarwood, John Milledge and Loganville Christian all made deep runs into the playoffs in both AA and AAA,” said Gatewood head coach Lee Whatley. “Seven of our first 11 games came against these teams.”
Although the team has not yet won a game, the Gators are still working hard to compete for a playoff spot. The young team is improving and gaining more valuable game experience every week.
“Our team has improved both offensively and defensively as the season has progressed,” Whatley said. “We put up a season-high total of runs last week against Flint River Academy.”
The offensive leader in batting average is one of the eighth-grade starters for the Lady Gators, Kortnie Moore. She is batting .467 through the first 11 games. Brooklyn McLaulin is also doing very well at the plate, batting .333. Josie Gregory leads the team with five RBIs. Davis is the defensive leader for the Gators, as she has started every game in the circle.
Gatewood will seek revenge against Monsignor Donovan and Loganville before continuing region play against Piedmont and Flint River.
Regardless of the outcome, the Lady Gators hope they will continue trending upward.