Lady Lions set to open softball season vs. Holmes
From school reports
SCOOBA — Back in action following last year’s abbreviated softball season due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Lady Lions of East Mississippi Community College are slated to begin the 2021 softball campaign this week with a scheduled home-and-home series against the Lady Bulldogs of Holmes Community College.
During the upcoming final week of January, EMCC and Holmes are set to play a 4 p.m. season-opening doubleheader Tuesday afternoon (Jan. 26) in Goodman. Tuesday’s softball doubleheader from Holmes is slated to be live-streamed at holmesccmedia.com/white-channel. The two teams are scheduled to meet again two days later during a Thursday twin bill set for a 1 p.m. start time at the EMCC Softball Field on the Scooba campus.
The Lady Lions are then scheduled to begin the month of February in non-conference tournament action at the Northeast Mississippi-hosted TigerFest, Feb. 11-14, in Booneville and the MCC-hosted Rush Invitational, Feb. 19, in Meridian.
The 14-date Mississippi Association of Community Colleges Conference (MACCC) softball schedule is slated to get started on Saturday, Feb. 27, with the EMCC Lady Lions set to open conference play by hosting East Central’s Lady Warriors in Scooba.
The MACCC’s 15 member schools are scheduled to play each other one time in softball doubleheader action during the conference’s two-month regular season, which is set to conclude on Saturday, April 24.
Expected to lead the way for EMCC’s 16-member squad will be third-year sophomore second baseman Hope Thames (Nanih Waiya HS), along with returning players Lily Ramsey (West Lauderdale HS), Allison Brown (Choctaw County HS), Kamryn Moore (Philadelphia), Rylee Bourland (Hatley HS), Jenna Coker (Grenada) and Carrie Grace Baty (Northeast Lauderdale HS).
Versatility within this group of returning veterans should certainly prove invaluable this coming season. Ramsey and Brown will likely alternate time behind the plate as well as challenge for starting spots in the field.
Bourland and Coker figure to see plenty of action in the circle in addition to sharing defensive duties at first base.
Also back among the team’s 10 returning players and looking for additional playing time this spring will be improved outfielders Tommesha Brown (Winona), Adria Thames (Louisville) and Bethany Stiglet (West Harrison HS).
Beginning their third season coaching together on the Scooba campus, EMCC head softball coach Austin McNair and assistant coach Kimmy Nicholson will also look to six incoming freshmen for significant contributions in the field and at the plate during the 2021 campaign.
Joining veterans Bourland and Coker in the circle, incoming freshman southpaw Taylor Watkins (Sebastopol) figures to become a mainstay on EMCC’s pitching staff as a left-handed starter.
Looking to help sure up the left side of the infield will be freshmen Kaitlynn Stroud (Enterprise) and Lauren Pickett (Southeast Lauderdale HS) at third base and shortstop, respectively. Maggie Meadows (Clarkdale HS) and fellow utility player Katelyn Humphreys (New Hope HS) will also get a shot to contribute as will outfielder Aislynn Cochran (Canton).