With high school classes already in session, it must mean that fall sports action is just around the corner.
South Effingham jump starts its softball season Friday with a 7 p.m. scrimmage against Savannah Christian.
To prepare for a grueling season that includes playing a few metro Atlanta schools, SEHS coach Donnie Ussery wants his girls playing tough competition early and often.
Savannah Christian is one of the hottest teams in the area. The Lady Red Raiders finished fourth in Class AA last season and won their region championship.
“Looking at teams in the area, I tried to find the best and Savannah Christian was at the top of the list,” Ussery said. “In the past, they have always had great coaching and have done an excellent job the last few years.”
Ussery said the Mustangs used to have a good rivalry with the Lady Red Raiders when they both played in the same region.
“We had some wars with them,” he said. “My second year coaching in 2004, they eliminated us from the state playoffs. They do things right over there and that’s one of the reasons I scheduled them.”
Several of the girls on both teams know each other well, because they play either against each other or with one another during summer ball.
Ussery said all players will see playing time.
“I want to see how some of my girls do against live competition,” he said. “We have some competition for some starting jobs (left field and center field) and we need to fill in our starting lineup.”
The Lady Mustangs return eight starters off last year’s team that advanced to the Class AAA elite eight and won the Region 3-AAA title.
Returning players include pitchers Sally Faircloth and Allison Kirkland, right fielder Ciara Knowles, catcher Crystal sellers, second baseman Katie Rietkovich, shortstop Joni Lynn, third baseman Sarah Parker and first baseman Austin Oglesby.