Skip to content

Lady Jackets will rely on arm of Wiley and youth movement

Lady Jackets will rely on arm of Wiley and youth movement
Lady Jackets will rely on arm of Wiley and youth movement | Brantley Wiley, Greenfield Lady Yellowjackets, Greenfield Tennessee

Steady — Pitcher Brantley Wiley will be the elder statesman for the Lady Yellowjackets as the team’s only senior.
Coach Hal Blackman and the Greenfield Lady Yellowjackets softball team are on a mission to prove the age-old theory this season that age is nothing but a number.
The Lady Yellowjackets return only one senior to the field, pitcher Brantley Wiley, but are expecting big things from younger players who have shown promise in previous years of play.
“Wiley will be on the mound for us most of the time,” Blackman said. “In three years, she’s won 30 games. We’ll build around her. We’ve lost a lot of good seniors that will have to be replaced.”
Starting for Greenfield this year will be junior Hailey Raynor at third base. Freshmen Jordan Galey and Emily Randolph will split time at catcher, but will also be on the field at different positions. Freshman Jessica Williams will start at either first base or in the outfield. Sophomore Jasmine Allen will play in the outfield and freshman Morgan Bodkins will step in at shortstop.
Beyond that, the field is wide open with Danielle Pence, Savannah McKeel and Bre Henry carrying playing experience.
“The rest of the girls are new,” Blackman said. “Jessica Rickenbacker played a year, but didn’t play last year. She will come in to play outfield. The last two positions are open.”
Last season, the Lady Jackets were beaten in the first round of the playoffs by Halls, 3-2, in a game Blackman felt his team had the chance to win.
“We need to feel good about competitiveness and the ability to compete,” he admitted. “We beat Gleason to get into the playoffs. We split in the regular season. We had a good game and played Halls as tough as you could have played them.” Halls is always one of the top contenders in Class A softball in West Tennessee.
“In the district, South Fulton is always the team to beat and they have been the team to beat for a long time. They’re known for softball,” he added.
Blackman sees this season as a year of rebuilding having lost more than half of his infield including six of nine starters, but he is counting on the younger players to show experience beyond their years in helping get the team to the top.
“This is a group that works hard,” he stressed. “They like to have fun and they like to play. They really enjoy the game. Even though they’re young, some of them have played during the summer. Three-fourths of the team are eighth and ninth-graders who have played at camps and in summer league. They definitely have some experience.”
Greenfield will open its season with a doubleheader at Humboldt on March 17. The Lady Jackets’ first home game will be March 26 vs. Gleason with the first pitch set for 4 p.m.

Leave a Comment