By Thomas Sellers Jr.
Recent history has been kind to the Munford Lady Cougars reaching the Class 3A State Tournament from 2011-14
More recent history has seen the program come up a couple of steps short of reaching the final tournament of the season held in Murfreesboro every May. Veteran Head Coach Glenn Goulder has the same goal entering each season knowing its a process.
“The preseason has been interesting,” Goulder said. “We have a chance to be a little bit better than we were last year. That will be a real positive.
“I really think we have a chance of getting out of the district,” he added. “I’m not saying we’ll win the district. The top two teams will advance and there are four teams in it. The other three are real talented. Hardin County gave us fits last year. We split with the other two teams.”
District 13-3A is always a toss up with Munford, Hardin County and perennial powers Dyer County and Brighton.
Knowing the competition will be stout, Goulder is focusing on his Lady Cougars entering the 2017 campaign.
“We’re still trying to figure out who is going to play,” he acknowledged. “We’ve got more parts than we did last year. We had some freshmen move in that are very, very capable. We had a transfer move in from Ohio (Hannah Finley) who is going to help us some. We’re a little bit more flexible than we were this time last year.”
Goulder said the pitching will be by committee with Finley in the mix.
“Right now we’re on a definite rotation,” he said. “I’m not sure on how long that will last. We’ve got Findley and Makayla Faulk throwing in the low 60s. We’ve got Makayla Reed and she’s a freshman who is very capable.”
Past Munford squads have been known for good pitching as well as speed and power in the batting order.
Expect no different when the 2017 Lady Cougars step to the plate.
“We’ll have a little bit of pop this year,” Goulder said. “One through six are nailed down pretty good. We’re going to leadoff with MaKayla Reed. Kelsey Frizzell will bat second and play shortstop. Ali Gover will bat third. She will play first base and centerfield when Faulk is pitching.
“MaKayla Faulk will bat clean up for us,” he added. “Makayla Pugh will catch and bat fifth. Vada Butler will play first and third depending on the lineup. And she’ll bat sixth.”
Players like Kelsey Moss, Hope Norman and Jay Welch will be counted on to step up in the order to help the Lady Cougars get over the hump to return back to State.
“We have to avoid the injury bug,” Goulder said. “We’re pretty deep this year but we have certain positions we’re not real deep at. Then we’re going to have to consistently hit the ball at the bottom of the lineup. Last year we struggle offensively for the whole season.
“We didn’t hit the ball real well or with any consistency last year,” he concluded. “We left a lot of folks on base and loss a lot of close ball games. Also we really need to cut down on the free passes we gave. I never seen anybody thrown out with a hit-baseman or walk. They’re going to come back and bite you. We have to keep folks off the bases so it won’t come back and bite us.”
By Thomas Sellers Jr.