Georgiana faces test in No. 1-ranked Lady Bulldogs

Published 5:02 pm Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The Georgiana Lady Panthers are headed to the sandy beaches of Gulf Shores, but vacation is the furthest thing from their minds.

Instead of an extended spring break, the varsity softball team is traveling to the Alabama High School Athletic Association South Regional Qualifier on Wednesday, and head softball coach Ezell Powell is excited, regardless of the outcome.

“For these young ladies, it’s just about experience,” Powell said.

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“They’re trying to get as much as experience as they can because they’re very young and that experience is what’s going to help us truly make the turn that we want to make in softball.”

It’s a situation Powell has been in before—it’s almost the same scenario he faced with Georgiana’s football team nearly two summers ago.

“You have to slowly work your way up to it, work the process, watch the young kids develop and grow and just know that within a year or two they’ll be where they can compete consistently against most of the teams they play,” Powell said.

The relatively young team will be even younger than normal in the absence of two seniors, who will miss the trip because of the Achiever Awards ceremony Thursday night.

But every cloud has a silver lining.

“It’ll give us a chance to truly get a look at what next year’s team will really look like,”  Powell added.

“I think that’s actually a big advantage for them not going, in a sense, for us as a team to get a chance to look at those young kids that will possibly be playing those roles next year.”

The Lady Panthers are excited about the challenge, and it is a sizeable challenge indeed. The team will face Brantley, the Class 1A state champions from last year.

Powell said that the team would need to do several things to come out on top, but he wouldn’t mind a bit of luck.

“They always have a strong program in softball as of late,” Powell said.

“They’ve got a pretty good pitcher and, if I’m not mistaken, she’s committed to Mississippi State. So they’re going to have a good softball team.”

The Lady Panthers will square off with the Lady Bulldogs on Thursday at 10 a.m.