Local teams ready for start to spring

Local teams ready for start to spring
By KEVIN WEAKS
Messenger Sports
Weather from the last few months shows there never really was a winter. Now, the athletic calendar says spring is here.
With the high school basketball season eight days from officially ending, spring sports throughout Obion County will begin next week, many teams getting under way as early as Monday.
The ultimate goal is just over two months away with the Spring Fling crowning champions in five sports the final week of May in Murfreesboro.
Locally, some athletes were fortunate enough to experience the Fling first-hand.
At Union City, a doubles tennis tandem and a pair of track athletes made the trip, and three of those will be back.
The tennis twosome of Anna Moore and Tara Elam return off their Region 7A-AA championship from the previous year, while Jackie Hudson is also back after earning the right to compete in both the shot and discus events at the Class A-AA state meet last season.
The Golden Tornado baseball team advanced to the sectional round, while the softball teams at UC and South Fulton battled for supremacy in District 14A before reaching the Region 7A Tournament semifinals.
SF’s softball team eventually won out in the district, finishing 24-8, while the Lady Tornadoes posted a 20-16 record.
The baseball team at South Fulton, as well as the softball and soccer teams at Obion Central are also coming off seasons of above-.500 records.
The Red Devils finished 17-11, while the Lady Rebel softball squad posted a 24-13-1 record with both teams seeing their seasons stopped in their respective district tournaments.
Central’s soccer team finished 8-3-2 and advanced to the regional semifinals.
While OC’s baseball team ended the year 14-18, the Rebels made a lot of noise in the District 13AA Tournament before suffering elimination one game short of the championship game and a regional berth.
The following is a quick look at the upcoming season for Obion County’s spring teams.
BASEBALL
Obion Central and South Fulton will get under way on Monday, while Union City will start its season the following day.
OC will start with the first of its 12 home games by hosting Dresden, the varsity game beginning at 5 p.m. followed by a JV game.
The Rebels have 20 games plus two tournaments on the schedule this season.
Head coach Chris Smith will look to six seniors to lead the team — Tanner Cary, Parker McMinn, Trey Phipps, Jordan Smith, Ryan Tucker and Colton Woodward.
The first of South Fulton’s 25 games, not counting two in-season tournaments, will be on the road as the Red Devils travel to Gleason for a 5 p.m. start. The home opener — SF will play 18 times at home — will be Tuesday against Ballard Memorial.
The schedule includes a home date against Fort Campbell, Ky., on March 29.
SF will host the Caleb Turner Classic April 12-14 and travel to Hickman County for the Falcons’ tourney April 27-28.
Union City will open Tuesday at South Gibson and then host Obion Central on Friday.
The Golden Tornadoes will have 22 games, including 12 at home, along with two in-season tourney appearances.
Peyton Mosley and Chris Boucher are the two seniors on head coach Jeremy Maddox’s 20-man roster. There are 11 juniors.
UC alum Tracy Bruff joins the coaching staff after serving as an assistant football coach at Fulton City this past fall.
Two tournaments will be played at UC’s L.H. Ladd Field as the L.H. Ladd Classic will be March 21-24 and then the St. Jude Classic will be the following week, March 28-31.
Union City will be joined by Crockett County, Dyersburg, Lone Oak, Calloway County, Huntingdon and Russellville, Ala., in the Ladd event, while OC will see McKenzie, Lake County, Owensboro Catholic and Westview visit.
Games will be played at L.H. Ladd Field and Thompson Field in Graham Park.
SOFTBALL
Obion Central will have played its season opener and participated in a weekend tournament before Union City and South Fulton get started.
OC, which has Amanda Bell and Macy Allison at its seniors, will host Gibson County on Tuesday and then travel to Jackson Thursday through Saturday for the Sarah Beth Whitehead Memorial Tournament at the Sports Plex.
Head coach Tommy Victory has charted a schedule that features 14 games, including seven at home, and five weekend tournaments.
The Lady Rebels will make weekend trips to Columbia, Dickson, Soddy Daisy and Cookeville.
Union City’s slate of 26 games plus two tournaments — at Milan and Covington — begins Monday, March 19, at Hickman County. UC’s first home date is three days later, a doubleheader with Bradford.
South Fulton will have 17 games, including five twinbills, along with two tournaments.
The season begins with the first of eight home dates Tuesday, March 20, against Westview in a double dip.
Curt Lee’s squad has seven seniors, including Macey Maxwell, Jennifer Allen, Chelsie Pitts, Marina Barclay, Haley McKinney, Kacie Daugherty and Savannah Larson.
TENNIS
Union City will play 16 times, while OC will play 14 matches.
The Golden Tornadoes will host 11 opponents, beginning Monday with Trinity Christian.
Central’s schedule begins that day as well, at Crockett County, while the first of eight home matches will be the following day against Haywood.
UT Martin will again be the site of the district tournament, set for May 4-5, and Union City will host regionals May 10-11.
SOCCER
Obion Central will embark on a 17-game schedule, not counting a possible five matches at the Best of the West tournament at University School of Jackson April 24-28.
The Rebels will host Haywood on Tuesday in the first of seven straight home matches.
SF’s 16-game schedule begins Tuesday as well at Westview. The first of seven home matches will be March 20 against Gibson County.
TRACK
The Tornadoes will compete in seven meets, including three at Dyersburg.
The season begins March 29 with a quad meet at UC’s War Memorial Stadium. Union City’s regular season will close at home, the prestigious Rotary Relays scheduled for May 3.
UC will host the A-AA West Sub-Sectional May 5-8. Published in The Messenger 3.9.12

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