Lady Raiders aim for comeback

Softball is off to a great season
Lady Raiders aim for comeback

For the last two decades, Madison County High School Lady Raider softball has been the premier sport of MCHS’s athletic programs; however, last year they took the backseat to men’s basketball. With the addition of seven newly competitive teams to the region, and the lack of seniors, last year’s season took a hit with a record of 14-14. The Lady Red Raiders intend to make a huge comeback in the 2023-2024 season, and are right on track with a record of 9-5-1. 

[what’s] better and more rewarding is to see them mature into wonderful people because of the relationships and discipline it takes to play this game at a high level.

— Coach Ken Morgan

The head coach, Ken Morgan, has been coaching Red Raider Softball for 18 years. He has seen many teams win titles at both the regional level and state level. Morgan says his favorite memories from softball are “seeing players in the program become better players [while] they work hard at the game, but [what’s] better and more rewarding is to see them mature into wonderful people because of the relationships and discipline it takes to play this game at a high level.”  Morgan not only has a heart for the sport, but he also has a heart for the players. Morgan credits this year’s group of girls for his optimistic attitude: “My biggest take-away is the chemistry of this year’s team! These girls love each other and are committed to one another! Makes our jobs as coaches easier and helps our team stay focused on the goals we have regardless of the circumstances we are in.” When asked about last year’s season, Morgan says the solution is “no excuses.” Morgan says, “What we will do is build off the experience of the close games and highs and lows to learn from it and come in better mentally to make a run this year.” The Lady Raiders are determined to work hard both physically and mentally to regain their spot as head of MCHS’s athletic program.

The current season’s team has been blessed with three talented senior players: Reagan Fulcher, Mary Drayke Summers, and Laney Cox. One is even furthering her softball career at the college level. Reagan Fulcher works hard at her third base position, and was recently rewarded with her signing to Southern Wesleyan University. Fulcher says, “My college decision was very challenging and tedious…It was so special to get the privilege and be able to play at the next level.”

Being an upperclassmen comes with many responsibilities from both the player and leader perspectives. Lily Pittman, a junior that has made a lot of progress throughout her seasons, states, “I’m an upperclassman now and the freshmen look up to me. I have a part to live up to and it pushes me to be a better player and teammate.” Pittman has been catching at the varsity level for the past two years and has experience playing both as an underclassman as well as an upperclassman. Part of an upperclassmen’s role is to unite the team. Brooke Porterfield, a starting freshman on varsity, has felt first hand the impact of good upperclassmen influence: “At first I was super nervous but the entire team has been wonderful role models to me and made me feel at home and part of a family.”

After getting through their first six weeks of the season, Red Raider softball still has their eyes set on making it to the state playoffs. The team is continuing to work hard everyday while forming lifelong bonds with their teammates. 

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