MILLEDGEVILLE — Georgia Military Prep School softball has been busy this week, pulling off two victories at home with the first coming against Perry on Monday for the Lady Bulldogs’ senior day and the second against West Laurens on Wednesday.
Recognizing the team’s lone senior, Jessica Hayles, on Monday prior to the game, GMC Prep snagged their 19th win this season as they beat Perry 4-0.
“We managed four runs just by putting the ball in play, doing a great job running the bases; you know, it’s not always going to be pretty and it’s not always going to look in the box score, but they got it done,” Julie Brooker, head coach, said.
Adding to her resume, Dixie Raley pulled off a big win against Perry, shutting them down offensively and leaving them scoreless.
“Perry was an unreal game. Really Perry swings the bat so hard, so for Dixie to work through that line up and come up with 19 strikeouts is really phenomenal,” Brooker said. “Really didn’t see a whole lot from our defense, as far as getting our defense to work. The only two outs were I think we threw a runner out at third and there was a bunt-out that came from third to first.”
Offensively, GMC Prep was led by Whitley Dunn, who earned her third home run of the season against Perry.
“Whitley’s just a dangerous bat,” Brooker said. “She’s leading the team with batting average. She’s batting right at .500.”
Also, continuing to lead the Lady Bulldogs’ defense was Hayles behind the plate.
“Jessica is just a natural born leader; she has worked for everything she’s gotten and deserves everything she’s gotten. I’ve been coaching for 10 years and she’s the best defensive player I’ve ever coached,” Brooker said. “I struggle with do I really want her in the field or do I want her catching, but this year we’ve really gone with a pitcher-catcher game and she’s just done a phenomenal job with our pitching staff. We’re not striking out batters and doing like we’re doing without Jessi back there.”
GMC Prep extended its record to 19-3 by overtaking West Laurens 9-5 in the teams’ final regular-season competition.
The team had one of its best nights offensively with everyone in the line up putting the ball in play.
“I just really like the way the entire team swung the bat tonight,” Brooker said. “Everybody took their turn and learned from the previous at-bat.”
Defensively, the Lady Bulldogs looked to Macy Watkins on the mound early on; though, Sarah Margaret Mason finished things off for GMC Prep on Wednesday night.
Brooker believes sophomore Kaylie Harding performed well against the Lady Raiders, showing much improvement since the beginning of the season.
“I really like the way Kaylie Harding is coming around. She’s been key, and she’s making big plays at third base,” Brooker said. “She started out as a utility—I had her at first, I had her in the outfield, she catches, and now she’s got a position and doing a great job.”
Looking toward the postseason, GMC Prep will take on Aquinas at home on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. for a Region Crossover contest, in which the winner of the game will play in the Region 7A Championship game later in the week.