by Adam Waldorf, Associate Editor
photos by Victoria Healy, Newton Managing Editor
On April 29, the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association softball tournament begins and Georgia Perimeter College will be there. As of April 20, GPC was ranked 20th in the nation in the National Junior College Association of America poll among all softball teams, after being unranked for the first time all season the week before.
Coach Edward Schutte is optimistic about the Jaguars’s chances to advance out of the GCAA tournament to the NJCAA tournament in Utah. He says, “We have as good a chance as anybody, provided we don’t get bit with the injury bug.” Right now, the Jaguars have injuries to their outstanding second pitcher Lauren Bell, first baseman Kyla Tanner, second baseman Nikki Montessanti and third baseman Heather Kilar.
GPC’s most formidable competition in the six team tournament will be Darton College, who edged GPC for the region 17 regular season title with an 18-2 division record to GPC’s 17-3 division record. Darton split a doubleheader with GPC on the last day of the regular season, with a 2-0 win for GPC and a 2-1 win for Darton. GPC’s ace pitcher Christina Ezell pitched 14 innings in the doubleheader, pulling double duty in the absence of the injured Bell.
Catcher Devin Dossman says of the GCAA, “Our chances of doing well and winning are very high.” She notes that they’ve beaten every team in the tournament at least once if not twice. She says their advantages are their ace Christina Ezell, who recently got the 600th strikeout of her career; team chemistry, most of their team played with or against each other on travel teams and in high school; and experience, they have eight sophomores who helped GPC win the GCAA last year.
Dossman says, “I have faith in all of my girls as well as coaches that we will go into this weekend expecting nothing less than plans to book a flight to Utah.”