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Local standouts savor all-star showing

Local standouts savor all-star showing
Local standouts savor all-star showing

Marina Barclay, Macy Maxwell, Kaitlyn Wheeles and Haley McKinney represented South Fulton and Union City, respectively
By RANDY CAVIN
Special to The Messenger
Before going their separate ways, four Obion County prep softball standouts got together one final time to play in the third annual West Tennessee High School All Star game.
And in a contest where who won and who lost didn’t matter, all walked away with another fond memory.
South Fulton’s Haley McKinney, Marina Barclay and Macy Maxwell, along with Kaitlyn Wheeles of Union City were all members of the ‘Blue’ team that battled to a 5-all tie with the ‘Gold’ squad in the game played at the West Tennessee Healthcare Complex in Jackson.
The local quartet represented itself well collectively and as individuals — just as they did during the season for their respective teams.
McKinney, a two-time all-state pitcher for the Devilettes, got the starting nod for the Blue Team. She pitched three innings, gave up two runs on two hits, with three strikeouts, walked one and went hitless in one at bat.
While pleased with her performance, she said she wishes she could’ve gotten one final win in the circle. She has no plans to pitch any further, she said, despite her stellar prep career numbers.
Her plans now include getting ready for college life and to enjoy her summer.
“I am going to Middle Tennessee State University this fall,” McKinney said. “I am going into nursing at MTSU. This summer I plan to work, play the piano and run.”
Wheeles, an Austin Peay-signee, went 1-for-1 and knocked in a run in the top of the sixth inning to give the Blue team a 5-3 lead. She played sparingly in centerfield.
Her plans for the summer are to stay in shape and to fine tune her softball skills.
“I plan to run a lot and to practice as much as I can,” she said. “I also need to work as much as I can to earn to extra money for college.”
Wheeles said the game experience playing with such good athletes was helpful. She got the chance to play with one of her future teammates. Niya Starks of Lexington played third base for the Blue team and will be joining Wheeles as a freshman this fall at APSU.
Barclay started in centerfield then moved over to third base before returning to centerfield in the bottom of the seventh inning. She reached on a fielder’s choice in the in the second inning, stole second base and later scored. She reached on a error in the fourth and scored on a double steal from third.
“It was nice playing with people as my teammates who I have been playing against my whole life,” Barclay said afterward. “It was different, but a great experience.”
She plans on going to UT-Martin this fall and to work this summer. She said if a college team wanted her to play for them then she definitely would do it.
“I plan on working this summer to earn money for college because I am broke,” she said with a laugh. “Obviously, I would not turn down a scholarship to play. I just have not been offered it yet.”
Maxwell started out a designated hitter and then moved behind the plate in the second inning where she stayed for the remainder of the game.
She went 1-for-2 with a base hit in the fourth and came around to score later in the inning.
“It was fun playing with all of these seniors,” Maxwell said. “It was probably the last time I will get to play with them.”
Her plans also include finding a job this summer and then attending college at UTM in the fall.

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