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Lady Panthers on prowl for playoffs
by Ericka Birdsong
ebirdsong@neighbornewspapers.com
September 26, 2012 02:45 PM | 1249 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Chapel Hill pitcher Caitlin Legrand warms up before a recent home game.
Chapel Hill pitcher Caitlin Legrand warms up before a recent home game.
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The Chapel Hill Lady Panthers were anticipating the playoffs as they entered the last week of the regular season, which ends today.

In the 4A-AAA subregion, the Chapel Hill softball team was leading the way with a 7-2 region record going into final games this week which were all non-region. In the entire 4-AAA region, the Lady Panthers are in third, just behind Central Carroll and Rockmart, which are tied for first at 8-1.

This season, led by their longtime head coach, Mikey Harper, the Lady Panthers are looking forward to the playoffs again and hoping to gain another title. The state tournament begins Oct. 10.

“I am pleased with our region record and seeding as we will go in as No. 1 seed in our subregion and that will enable us to host a portion of the tournament. This was our goal when we started the season so I am happy with our position,” Harper said.

Never finishing less than .500, Chapel Hill softball has built a tradition of great softball as the team has been to the playoffs several times in the past eight years, including 2004, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2011 and now 2012.

The Lady Panthers saw their best season in 2009 as they finished the year 37-3 overall, region champions and third place in the state tournament.

Even though Harper is pleased that his team is making it to playoffs as the first seed in their sub-region, he said he feels his team could have done better this season. But he did see progress.

“I feel the team has played up to their potential for most of the season. I feel we still have not played at utmost best we can play, but we seem to be getting better with every game and that is all you can ask for as a coach,” Harper said.

Going into the state tournament, Chapel Hill has several players that are leading the way for the team.

On the mound, Harper said sophomore Darby Demarest and junior Catlin Legrand have led the way. Offensively, Harper named Jordan Hawthorne and Kayley Barker as the most consistent hitters.

With playoffs just a week away, Harper believes his team can make it far this year.

“I feel we have a great chance as long as will stick together and play as a team,” Harper said.
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