2016-17 Softball News


Lady Bucks stretch recruiting focus to rebuild Motlow State softball roster

June 20, 2017

The Motlow State Community College softball program is stretching its recruiting focus and adding some of the immediate area's top talent in hopes of repositioning itself back into championship contention, according to Head Coach Janice Morey.

Breanna Owens
Motlow State rising sophomore Breanna Owens is one of five returning players who will be counted on to lead the Lady Bucks during the 2018 season. Owens, from Fayetteville, batted .298 last year with 11 doubles and 16 runs batted in. She also had six stolen bases and struck out only eight times in 141 plate appearances. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.
Motlow has signed 14 incoming freshmen to National Letters of Intent, including 12 from Tennessee, one from Alabama and one from Georgia. The Lady Bucks will return five from the 2017 squad, with all five being from Motlow's service area.

Although the majority of student-athletes on the roster will be from Tennessee, Morey and her staff have worked hard at identifying talent from outside Motlow's service area, which stretches from Rutherford County to White County to Huntsville, Alabama.

"Softball is a very strong sport on the high school level in the state of Tennessee," said Morey. "We feel confident we can build a program that consistently contends for conference championships with student-athletes from our state. At the same time, we aren’t bound by state lines and we always want to be open to expanding our recruiting focus."

Incoming freshmen who will be counted on to contribute to the 2018 edition of the Lady Bucks, and their hometown and high school, includes:

Jennifer Corbitt, McDonald, Bradley Central; Kendall Durard, Shelbyville, Shelbyville Central; Katelyn Elliott, McEwen; Alessandria Hanson, Hendersonville; Haley Hinshaw, Hillsboro, Coffee County Central; Madison Hopkins, Lewisburg, Cornersville; Annsley Kalamon, Hendersonville; Samantha King, Columbia, Forrest; Ariel McAtee, Smyrna, Stewarts Creek; Emily Parks, Tullahoma, Moore County; Geneva Tackett, McMinnville, Warren County; and Skyler Youngblood, McMinnville, Warren County.

Freshmen from outside Tennessee are Caroline Sarris from Kell High School in Acworth, Georgia, and Kylie Thackerson from Scottsboro High School in Scottsboro, Alabama.

The 14 freshmen will join five returning sophomores for the Lady Bucks: Miranda Cooksey, Ciera Dobbins, Chelbie Gannon, Breanna Owens and Sarah Beth Wilson.

The Lady Bucks can carry up to 20 players on the roster, which leaves Coach Morey with the availability to sign another student-athlete prior to the upcoming season. Motlow softball will play an exhibition schedule in the fall and open the 2018 season in early February.

Motlow Lady Bucks Softball Camp begins June 13

May 10, 2017

The Motlow State Lady Bucks will hold their annual softball camp June 13-15 on Motlow's Moore County campus, according to Janice Morey, head coach of the Lady Bucks. Participants who register for the camp by June 6 will receive a free camp T-shirt.

2017 Softball Camp Registration Form

The camp will be split into two divisions - beginner and advanced. The beginner camp will be all three days from 9-11:30 a.m. The advanced camp will be all three days from 1-4 p.m. The camp fee is $75, but discounts are available for multiple siblings and for Motlow State employee children.

Campers will be taught fundamental skills in defense, hitting, bunting and base running. Registration forms can be found on the Motlow State athletics website at MotlowSports.com/Softball. For more information, or to register for camp, contact Coach Morey at 931-393-1617 or jmorey@mscc.edu.


Lady Bucks open TCCAA/Region VII Tournament against Cleveland State on Sunday

May 3, 2017

The Motlow State Lady Bucks will open postseason play on Sunday when they face off against Cleveland State in the first of two play-in games at the TCCAA/Region VII softball tournament in Gallatin.

TCCAA/Region VII Softball Tournament Bracket

The Lady Bucks (12-33, 8-24) are the No. 8 seed in the tournament while the Lady Cougars (15-33, 8-27) are No. 9. The first pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. and all tournament games will be played at Volunteer State Community College in Gallatin. The second play-in game features No. 10 Southwest Tennessee against No. 7 Dyersburg State. The season will end for the two play-in game losers, while the winners will advance to the full, double-elimination tournament.

Motlow enters the tournament after winning its final two games of the regular season, beating Southwest Tennessee 10-7, 8-3 Friday afternoon in Memphis. The Lady Saluqis won the first two games of the four-game series 5-4, 6-3 on Thursday.

Walters State (34-6) is the tournament's top seed, while Chattanooga State (37-7) and ranked No. 13 in the nation, is the second seed. The winner of the Motlow/Cleveland contest will face Walters State at noon Monday in the opening round. The tournament champion will be crowned on Wednesday afternoon.

The Lady Bucks are led in most offensive categories by sophomore Riley O'Neal, who has battled multiple injuries this season to hit .376 with 12 doubles, three home runs and 24 runs batted in. Classmate Ashton Watkins hit .338 with 10 doubles, two homers and 20 RBI, while Taylor Honea batted .314 with seven homers and 23 runs batted in.


Lady Bucks honor sophomores, face big test on the road at nationally-ranked Walters State

April 17, 2017

The Motlow State Lady Bucks will face one of their biggest challenges of the season this weekend when they travel to Morristown to face TCCAA rival Walters State, currently ranked No. 14 in the nation in the latest NJCAA poll. The series at Walters State is scheduled to begin Friday at 1 p.m. central.

The Lady Bucks (10-29, 6-20) are looking to regain their footing following a weekend four-game sweep at the hands of visiting Volunteer State in the final home series of the 2017 season. Volunteer won Thursday's games 11-0, 13-1, then captured Friday's doubleheader 7-0, 15-2.

Beautiful, sunny weather greeted a sizable crowd both Thursday and Friday at Lady Bucks Field on Motlow's Moore County campus, with a number of visitors making the trip from Gallatin. The Lady Pioneers dominated the action from the beginning as Motlow was only able to get five hits in the opening game and 19 hits for the series.

One bright spot for the Lady Bucks came in the final game of the series Friday, when Shelbyville's Chelbie Gannon blasted a two-run homer over the new 20-foot 'green monster' in left field. Gannon's homer, her second of the season, was the first hit by a Motlow player over the new outfield fence addition.

Prior to Friday's contests, the Lady Bucks recognized six sophomores who will finish their student-athlete careers at Motlow this season. They include Caroline Abernethy from Spring Hill, Taylor Mitchell from Fayetteville, Renee Buldoc from Madison, Ala., Riley O'Neal from Fayetteville, Ashton Watkins from Lewisburg, and Taylor Honea from Tullahoma.

Softball Sophomores
Motlow State paid tribute to six sophomore softball players during a ceremony prior to Friday's doubleheader against Volunteer State. They are from left: Caroline Abernethy from Spring Hill, Taylor Mitchell from Fayetteville, Renee Buldoc from Madison, Ala., Riley O'Neal from Fayetteville, Ashton Watkins from Lewisburg, and Taylor Honea from Tullahoma. The photo collages they hold were created by Jeff Reed Photography, Motlow's official game photographer. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.

Lady Bucks look to get offense untracked at Columbia State this weekend

March 28, 2017

The Motlow State Lady Bucks will look to get their offense going this coming weekend when they travel to Columbia after dropping a pair of low scoring, one-run games to Dyersburg State last weekend in Dyersburg.

Sarah Wilson
Motlow State freshman Sarah Wilson examines her defense from the pitching circle during a game earlier this season. Wilson, from Sparta, has been the Lady Bucks' most consistent pitcher with an earned run average of 4.10 in 71.2 innings pitched while giving up only 12 walks in 19 appearances. Wilson went the full seven innings and allowed just three hits in a 1-0 loss to Dyersburg State on Friday in Dyersburg. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.
The Lady Bucks (7-18, 4-10) only got to play two of the scheduled four games against the Lady Eagles, falling 1-0 and 3-2 on Friday. Saturday's scheduled doubleheader was cancelled due to weather, and will only be made up if the outcome directly affects the TCCAA standings.

Motlow will hope to put together strong pitching, which it got in Dyersburg, with increased offensive production when it travels to Columbia to take on Columbia State this weekend. The Lady Bucks and Lady Chargers are scheduled for doubleheaders both Friday and Saturday, with Friday's action starting at 4 p.m. and Saturday's at noon.

Friday's opener in Dyersburg was a splendid softball game halfway through the sixth inning, with neither team able to generate offense against outstanding pitching. Then came the bottom of the sixth, when Dyersburg scored the only run of the game due to a Motlow error, one of two in the game.

Sarah Wilson pitched well enough to win, allowing only three hits and two walks. Ashton Watkins had two of Motlow's three hits, with Riley O'Neal getting the other.

Friday's second game was just as painful for Motlow, as the Lady Eagles scored twice in the third inning and once more in the fourth to lead 3-0. The Lady Bucks finally generated a pair of runs in the fifth when Taylor Honea, who has been Motlow's best hitter this season, hit a two-run homer after Taylor Mitchell had doubled.

The Lady Bucks couldn't score again though, wasting another fine pitching performance. Breanna Owens tossed five innings, scattering seven hits and walking four, followed by Wilson allowing just one hit in the final inning.

Gannon's walk-off hit helps Lady Bucks salvage win over Roane State

March 20, 2017

Chelbie Gannon drove in Breanna Owens with a single in the bottom of the seventh inning to help the Motlow State Lady Bucks beat the Roane State Lady Raiders 7-6 Saturday afternoon at Lady Bucks Field on Motlow's Moore County campus.

Chelbie Gannon
Freshman Chelbie Gannon lined a single in the bottom of the seventh inning to drive in teammate Breanna Owens with the winning run Saturday as the Motlow State Lady Bucks beat Roane State 7-6 in a TCCAA conference game. Motlow will be on the road the next two weeks before returning to host Jackson State April 7. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.
The Lady Bucks (7-16, 4-8) were only able to win one game in the four-game conference series. Roane State won Saturday's opener 5-1, then swept both games of Sunday's doubleheader 7-1, 11-7. Motlow will take to the road for its next TCCAA series, traveling to Dyersburg State on March 24 and 25.

Trailing 6-2, the Lady Bucks scored three runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to pull within a run of the visitors in Saturday's win. Motlow tied it with a run in the sixth and won it after Owens led off the inning with a single. She then advanced to second and third on stolen bases, and scored as Gannon laced a clean single into left-center field.

Rebecca Price picked up the win in the circle after relieving starter Sarah Wilson in the fourth inning. Price was spectacular, striking out two without allowing a hit. Taylor Honea hit a home run and drove in two for the Lady Bucks and Ashton Watkins had a pair of hits.

After the series was postponed on Friday due to incoming bad weather, Saturday's first game was forgettable for the Lady Bucks. Roane State scored two in the first inning and three more in the second. Motlow managed only six hits, including two by Caroline Abernethy and two by Honea. Owens took the loss after lasting only two innings. Wilson was strong in relief, giving up only three hits with two strikeouts in the final five innings.

The Lady Bucks scored a run in the bottom of the first inning to open Sunday's first game, but could not generate any offense afterwards. Roane State tied it in the third and went ahead to stay in the fourth. Motlow managed only four hits, and Honea drove in Watkins with the only run. Owens took the loss, allowing seven hits and six runs in 4.2 innings.

The series finale was an offensive show by both teams, with Roane State jumping out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning. The Lady Bucks responded with five runs in the second, but the Lady Raiders scored three in the third and two more in the fourth to lead 7-5. Motlow responded with two in the bottom of the fourth, but Roane came right back with a run in fifth and three more in the seventh. The Lady Raiders banged out 19 hits against four Motlow pitchers.

Riley O'Neal and Ciera Dobbins each had a pair of hits for Motlow, with O'Neal and Owens driving in two runs each. Honea, a sophomore from Tullahoma, continues to hit the ball extremely well. She now leads the team in most offensive categories, hitting .412 with four home runs and 14 RBI.

Lady Buck bats heat up in conference series win over Cleveland State

March 14, 2017

The Motlow State Lady Bucks went on the road and won three out of four games against Cleveland State over the weekend, including a doubleheader sweep Saturday in frigid temperatures in Cleveland.

Taylor Honea
Motlow State sophomore Taylor Honea, pictured from a game earlier this season, slammed two home runs and had seven hits to help lead the Lady Bucks to a 3-1 series win over TCCAA rival Cleveland State over the weekend in Cleveland. Honea, from Tullahoma, is hitting .343 for the season. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.
The Lady Bucks (6-13, 3-5) will return to their newly remodeled field to host TCCAA rival Roane State this weekend. Friday's doubleheader begins at 1pm and Saturday's starts at noon. There is no admission charge to Motlow home athletic contests.

Earlier in the week the Lady Bucks hosted powerful Wabash Valley College, dropping both games of a doubleheader 11-0 and 2-1. After falling in the opener against Cleveland 5-4 on Friday, the Lady Bucks swept the final three games 11-2, 9-1 and 3-2.

Friday's opening loss to the Lady Cougars came after Motlow had taken a 4-0 lead with one run in the second inning and three more in the fourth. However, the home team tied it with four runs in the fourth and the winning run in bottom of the fifth.

Taylor Honea, who had seven hits over the weekend, slammed a home run and drove in two runs, while Riley O'Neal and Ciera Dobbins also had RBI. Breanna Owens took the loss, pitching five innings and allowing all five runs, while Sarah Wilson tossed the final inning.

Friday's nightcap was all Motlow as the Lady Bucks scored one in the first inning, two in the second, four in the fourth, one in the fifth and three more in the seventh. Motlow had 19 hits for the game, including four by leadoff hitter Ashton Watkins and three by No. 9 hitter Taylor Mitchell.

Owens, Honea, O'Neal and Chelbie Gannon each added two hits, with Honea hitting a triple and another home run and Watkins a triple and two doubles. O'Neal drove in three runs, with Watkins and Gannon each driving in two. Wilson went the distance in the circle and got the win, allowing seven hits and a walk.

Saturday's first game once again featured a potent Motlow offense and solid pitching. Owens bounced back nicely to grab the win, going the full seven innings and scattering 10 hits with three strikeouts.

Caroline Abernethy and Miranda Cooksey each had three hits, while Owens, O'Neal and Gannon had two each. Cooksey and Dobbins drove in two runs apiece and Abernethy hit a triple and stole two bases.

The series finale was a tightly contested game that saw Motlow score all three runs in the top of the third inning and the Lady Cougars score both of their runs in the bottom of the fourth. Wilson finished off an excellent weekend in the circle, going the distance and scattering nine hits with two strikeouts and no walks allowed.

O'Neal was the hero at the plate, slamming a three-run homer in the third with Owens and Honea on base. Honea and Gannon hit doubles and each had two hits on the day as did O'Neal.

Cornersville shortstop Madison Hopkins signs to play softball at Motlow State

March 17, 2017

Madison Hopkins
Madison Hopkins, a shortstop from Cornersville High School, recently signed a National Letter of Intent to continue her softball career as a student-athlete at Motlow State Community College. Seated with Madison is her mother, Heather, and father, Timmy. Standing from left; Lenora Word, Motlow State assistant coach; Janice Morey, Motlow head coach, and Brent Adcox, principal at Cornersville High School. Photo provided.

Lady Bucks sweep Martin Methodist JV, prepare for home opener next weekend

Feb. 24, 2017

The Motlow State Lady Bucks earned their first doubleheader sweep of the young season, on the road, and will finally play their first home game when TCCAA rival and defending champion Chattanooga States visits for a four-game series March 3-4.

Riley O'Neal
Motlow State sophomore Riley O'Neal runs through a tunnel of teammates following her home run that gave the Lady Bucks the lead and helped them to an 8-3 win over the Martin Methodist College JV team Wednesday afternoon. Motlow won both games over the RedHawks and will host Chattanooga State on Friday, March 3. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.
The Lady Bucks (3-6, 0-0) traveled to Pulaski and beat the Martin Methodist College JV team 8-3 and 3-1 Wednesday afternoon. Doubleheaders against Chattanooga State will begin Friday at 1 p.m. and Saturday at noon at Motlow's newly-renovated Lady Bucks Field on the Moore County campus.

Wednesday's opening win against the RedHawks was keyed by Riley O'Neal's two-run home run in the top of the fifth inning, which scored Ashton Watkins who had doubled with one out. The homer broke a 3-3 tie and sent the Lady Bucks to their second victory of the year.

Motlow scored a run in the first inning when O'Neal singled with two outs to drive in Caroline Abernethy, who led off the game with a triple. The Lady Bucks increased their lead to 3-0 in the third inning when Breanna Owens and Watkins singled, then advanced a base when O'Neal reached on an error. Both Owens and Watkins scored as Ciera Dobbins grounded into a double play.

After Martin Methodist tied the score in the fourth inning, O'Neal's big hit put the Lady Bucks in the lead for good. O'Neal and Watkins each had three hits with Taylor Honea adding a pair of hits and two RBI on a seventh inning triple that drove in O'Neal and Dobbins.

Owens went the distance and got the win on the mound, scattering six hits and striking out five while allowing only one walk.

Game two saw the Lady Bucks jump out to a 3-0 lead in the first inning. Abernethy led off with a single and Owens reached on an error. Watkins then doubled, driving in Abernethy and advancing Owens to third base. With two outs, Chelbie Gannon singled to left, driving in both Owens and Watkins.

Owens started the game on the mound but pitched only one inning, allowing one hit and two walks. Sarah Wilson pitched the final six innings and got the win, giving up only one hit and two walks with two strikeouts.

Scottsboro's Kylie Thackerson signs softball Letter of Intent with Motlow State

Feb. 8, 2017

Kylie Thackerson
Scottsboro (Ala.) High School softball player Kylie Thackerson recently signed a National Letter of Intent to continue her career as a student-athlete at Motlow State Community College. Seated (left to right) are Vivian Thackerson, Tara Thackerson, Kylie and Leslie Thackerson. Standing (left to right) are Lenora Word, Motlow assistant coach; Ben Johnson, Scottsboro assistant coach; Robyn Johnson, Scottsboro head coach; and Janice Morey, Motlow head coach. Photo provided.

Seven-run first inning leads Lady Bucks to softball win over FSC-Jacksonville

Feb. 2, 2017

Five different Lady Bucks drove in runs during a seven-run first inning as Motlow State beat Florida State College of Jacksonville 10-5 last week in the Kickoff Softball Classic in Clearwater, Fla.

The Lady Bucks (1-4, 0-0) were not able to get their offense going in other games against some of the nation's top softball programs during three days of competition in Florida. Motlow lost 10-1 to Miami Dade, 11-1 to Palm Beach, and 8-0 to both Central Florida, ranked No. 1 in the nation in the NJCAA preseason poll, and Seminole State. Motlow's sixth scheduled game in Clearwater, against St. Petersburg, was rained out on Sunday, Jan. 29.

Motlow was able to practice outside only once since Jan. 10, the official start of practice, due to extremely wet field conditions. The Lady Bucks will hope to get more opportunities to get on the field before their next scheduled contest, which is Thursday, Feb. 16, when they travel to Decatur, Ala., for a 1 p.m. doubleheader against Calhoun.

The win against Jacksonville is what Head Coach Janice Morey and her Lady Bucks will focus on. Caroline Abernethy led off the game with a single and moved to second on a sacrifice by Breanna Owens. Ashton Watkins tripled to drive in Abernethy with Motlow's first run. Riley O'Neal and Chelbie Gannon both walked, loading the bases with one out.

Ciera Dobbins' single drove in Watkins and kept the bases loaded, and Kat Sledge delivered with a two-run single to right field, scoring O'Neal and Gannon and sending Dobbins to second to give the Lady Bucks a 4-0 lead. Miranda Cooksey then doubled to right field, driving in both Dobbins and Sledge, and scored herself on Taylor Mitchell's groundout to give Motlow a 7-0 lead.

Jacksonville scored three runs in the bottom of the first off Motlow starter Summer Carter, who got the win by pitching four innings and allowing eight hits and five earned runs. Owens pitched the final three innings and gave up only four hits.

Abernethy and Cooksey each had three hits and drove in two runs, while Sledge and Mitchell had two RBI as well. Abernethy also added a pair of stolen bases, while Sledge and Cooksey each had one steal.


Sophomores Watkins, Abernethy and O'Neal lead Motlow State Lady Bucks into 2017 softball season

Jan. 23, 2017

After compiling a winning season under first-year head coach Janice Morey last year, Motlow State's softball program is on the rise. Sophomores Ashton Watkins, Caroline Abernethy and Riley O'Neal will be expected to lead the Lady Bucks when the 2017 campaign gets underway this weekend.

Motlow will open the season Jan. 27, when it travels to Clearwater, Fla., to begin three days of competition against some of the nation's top JUCO softball programs. The highlight is Saturday morning at 11 a.m., when the Lady Bucks will play Central Florida, which finished last season ranked second in the nation.

The Lady Bucks' home field on the Moore County campus is in the process of a significant facelift. The facility will feature new backstop netting and a brick backstop wall, a new scoreboard, and a new 20-foot tall 'green monster' leftfield wall. The first home game is March 3, with TCCAA rival Chattanooga State visiting for the first conference series of the season.

Watkins, Abernethy and O'Neal are three of six returning sophomores who are expected to play key roles for the Lady Bucks. All three, along with Taylor Mitchell, were starters last season and critical to Motlow's 28-24 season under Morey, who was hired in November 2015 to take over a program that had only one winning season in the previous four years.

"We expect great leadership physically, mentally and emotionally, from our returning starters," said Morey. "Conference play tends to be quite a dog fight every weekend, so our experienced players will need to teach our younger players what it takes to compete against a conference opponent for four games over two days."

Morey will have five returning sophomores, two redshirt freshmen, a transfer and five true freshmen to fill out her roster this season. She originally signed seven freshmen and had seven returning sophomores, but four decided the rigors and challenges of playing college softball were too much and they chose to end their playing careers.

"Our numbers are a little low this year," Morey continued. "But we expect that to pay off for our freshmen by the end of the season. The amount of extra repetitions they will get during practice and games should give them the confidence and understanding of what it takes to perform in this league by the time we get to the conference tournament at the end of the season."

Watkins, a shortstop from Lewisburg, is the Lady Bucks' top returning offensive producer. She hits for average and hits with power, batting .377 in 151 plate appearances last year and leading the team with seven home runs. In addition, she slammed 13 doubles, four triples and drove in 28 runs.

Abernethy, from Spring Hill, is the backbone of the outfield, holding down the centerfield position and was named all-conference in 2016. She hit .341 last year with six doubles, a triple and 19 runs batted in. As the leadoff hitter, she led the team in stolen bases with six and was only caught one time. Her plate discipline is excellent, striking out only 10 times last year in a team-high 182 at bats.

O'Neal, from Fayetteville, stepped into the catcher position last season after an injury to a classmate and performed outstanding. She batted .306 in 134 plate appearances with five doubles, three home runs and 31 runs batted in. She also had a great eye at the plate, walking 16 times while striking out only six, and proved herself in the clutch by hitting .500 with two home runs and nine runs batted in at the conference tournament.

Mitchell, also from Fayetteville, played in every game for the Lady Bucks last season, starting many of them in the outfield. She hit .218 with a double and five runs batted in. Motlow will need increased production from her this year.

Tullahoma's Taylor Honea saw limited action last year and will be expected to contribute more during the coming season. Joining her will be a pair of redshirt freshmen, both of whom sat out last year due to injury. Both Kat Sledge, from Whitwell, and Jamaica Johnson, from Shelbyville, will have an opportunity to contribute.

Renee Bolduc is the transfer, coming to Motlow after spending her freshman season at Calhoun Community College in Alabama. Bolduc will have one season at Motlow and will be counted on to add quality depth in the infield.

Although Morey has not yet had a full recruiting cycle as head coach, she has brought in five quality freshmen who should get plenty of playing time. Motlow places a premium on recruiting student-athletes from its 11-county service area, and the five incoming freshmen fit that bill nicely.

Outfielder Chelbie Gannon is from Shelbyville, pitcher/infielder Breanna Owens is from Fayetteville, pitcher Sarah Wilson comes from Sparta, outfielder Miranda Cooksey is from Lewisburg, and catcher/infielder Ciera Dobbins comes from LaVergne after playing at Stewarts Creek High School.

2017 Lady Bucks Softball Team
2017 Motlow Lady Bucks - Members of the 2017 Motlow Lady Bucks softball team, front row from left: Riley O'Neal, Sarah Wilson, Kathleen Sledge, Ashton Watkins, Taylor Mitchell and Breanna Owens. Back row from left; Miranda Cooksey, Caroline Abernethy, Chelbie Gannon, Ciera Dobbins, Jamaica Johnson, Taylor Honea and Renee Bolduc. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.

Motlow State opens 27th softball season with late January trip to Florida

Jan. 9, 2017

Motlow State Community College will open its 27th season of softball competition on Friday, Jan. 27, when it travels to Clearwater, Fla., where it will spend three days playing six games against some of the nation's top junior/community college programs. The Lady Bucks will play two games Friday, three Saturday and one Sunday.

Janice Morey
Motlow State Lady Bucks softball Head Coach Janice Morey will begin her second season leading the program when her team opens the 2017 season Jan. 27 in Clearwater, Fla. Morey led the Lady Bucks to a 28-24 record her first season, including a three-day run in the conference postseason tournament. Motlow's first home game is March 3, when TCCAA rival Chattanooga State visits the Moore County campus. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.
Motlow is coached by Janice Morey, set to begin her second season at the helm. Morey, who played for the Lady Bucks in the program's early years, compiled a 28-24 record in 2016. She is assisted by her husband Randy, a full-time employee at Motlow.

The Lady Bucks will play a pair of road doubleheaders in February before opening Tennessee Community College Athletic Association (TCCAA) play on Friday, Mar. 3, when Chattanooga State comes to the remodeled Lady Bucks Field for a 1 p.m. doubleheader. The two teams will play another twin bill the following day at noon.

Motlow will travel to Decatur, Ala., on Thursday, Feb. 16, for a doubleheader against Calhoun Community College, with the first pitch scheduled for 1 p.m. On Wednesday, Feb. 22, the Lady Bucks will play a 1 p.m. doubleheader against the Martin Methodist College JV in Pulaski.

Once TCCAA play opens, the Lady Buck will only have one non-conference date the remainder of the season when they host the Martin Methodist College JV on Apr. 11 for a 2 p.m. doubleheader. All softball schedule play dates are doubleheaders.

Softball conference series are each four games, with weekend doubleheaders played on back-to-back days. All Motlow series are on Friday and Saturday except the weekend of Apr. 13-14, when the Lady Bucks will host Volunteer State.

Due to there being 10 teams in the TCCAA, the Lady Bucks play an uneven number of home and away conference series each year. For 2017, Motlow will host four conference series and travel for five. The three longest road trips for Motlow are Dyersburg State, Walters State and Southwest Tennessee, and the Lady Bucks will make all three trips this year.

Home series will be against Chattanooga State on Mar. 3-4, Roane State on Mar. 17-18, Jackson State on Apr. 7-8, and Volunteer State on Apr. 13-14.

The TCCAA began fast-pitch softball as an official sport in 1994, and Motlow has been a championship contender since its inception. The Lady Bucks won the conference title in 2009, advancing to the national tournament for the only time in school history.

Motlow State softball program opens Legacy Walk fundraiser to help support facility improvements

Nov. 9, 2016

The Motlow State Community College softball program has begun raising funds to build a 'Legacy Walk' at the Moore County campus facility in support of a three-stage planned upgrade that will significantly change the appearance of Lady Bucks Field, according to Scott Shasteen, athletic director at Motlow.

Join the Legacy Walk Here

The project will include replacing the backstop from dugout to dugout, adding a 'green monster' type design to the left field fence area, and replacing the scoreboard.

To help raise funds to pay for the projects, the Motlow softball program has created a brick 'Legacy Walk', which will start near the new backstop and work its way toward the facility parking lot. Brick purchasers can honor softball alumni, former teams, businesses, industry, etc.

"We want to honor softball alumni and former coaches, as well as supporters of our program with this legacy walk," said Janice Morey, head softball coach at Motlow. "As a member of the alumni family, I cannot wait to see this project completed. When I walk along this legacy walk, I anticipate being able to visually see what a great tradition I am part of here at Motlow State.

"In advance, I want to thank all of our alumni, former players and coaches, instructors, staff members and business leaders who have supported our program in the past," added Morey. "With the purchase of a brick or bricks in this new legacy walk, those supporters can add their message and show their support in a way that will last for decades."

A website has been set up to show examples of brick purchasing options and to accept credit card purchases for the Motlow softball legacy walk: (www.brickmarkers.com/donors/mscc.html).

To learn more about the planned improvements to the softball facility and about additional ways you can support Motlow State athletics, visit MotlowSports.com or contact Morey at jmorey@mscc.edu or 931-393-1617 or Shasteen at sshasteen@mscc.edu or 931-393-1605.


McEwen's Katelyn Elliott will join Motlow State softball program

Dec. 6, 2016

Katelyn Elliott
McEwen High School standout softball player Katelyn (KK) Elliott recently signed a National Letter of Intent to continue her career as a student-athlete at Motlow State Community College next season. Joining Katelyn for the signing ceremony are, standing from left, Mandy Parker, Chris Elliott and Amber Elliott. Seated with Katelyn is Janice Morey, Lady Bucks head coach. Motlow will open its softball season Jan. 27 in Clearwater, Fla. Photo provided.

Georgia softball star Caroline Sarris signs Letter of Intent with Motlow State Lady Bucks

Nov. 22, 2016

Caroline Sarris
Caroline Sarris, who played her prep softball at Kell High School in Acworth, Ga., recently signed a National Letter of Intent to continue her career as a student-athlete at Motlow State Community College. Joining Caroline for the signing ceremony are, seated from left: Kelly Sarris, mother; Caroline and Pete Sarris, father. Standing from left: Larry Reid, travel coach; Barbara Reid, travel coach; Lindsay Barnette, Kell coach; Chere Amend, Kell coach; Janice Morey, Motlow head coach; Randy Morey, Motlow assistant coach; Jack Barnette, Kell coach; Kevin Foster, Kell coach; and Ron Storie, travel coach. Photo provided.

Forrest standout Samantha King to continue softball career at Motlow State

Nov. 14, 2016

Geneva Tackett
Warren County High School senior softball player Geneva Tackett recently signed a National Letter of Intent to continue her career as a student athlete at Motlow State Community College beginning fall 2017. Pictured, seated from left are: Ryan Tackett, father; Geneva and Gail Tackett, mother. Standing from left are: Janice Morey, Lady Bucks head softball coach, and Kadin Tackett, brother. Motlow State photo.

Samantha King
Forrest High School standout Samantha King recently signed a National Letter of Intent to continue her softball career as a student-athlete at Motlow State Community College. Seated from left: Bryan King, father; Samantha, and Ladonna King, mother. Standing from left: Janice Morey, Motlow State head coach; Ricky Stinnet, Shelby Sinnet, Forrest assistant coach; Becky Cheatham, Forrest head coach; Dick Cheatham and Davy McClaran. Photo provided.

Smyrna's Ariel McAtee Signs Letter of Intent to play Softball at Motlow State

Nov. 7, 2016

Ariel McAtee
Stewarts Creek High School softball standout Ariel McAtee recently signed a National Letter of Intent to continue her career as a student-athlete at Motlow State Community College. Joining Ariel for the ceremony are, seated from left, Heather McAtee, Ariel, Bobby McAtee and Bryant McAtee. Standing from left, Lenora Word, Morgan Evans, Tory Atwood, Janice Morey, Motlow State head coach; Emily Morris and Jennifer Smith. Photo provided.

Motlow State welcomes White County's Sarah Wilson to softball program

Aug. 4, 2016

Sarah Wilson
Sarah Wilson, who played her prep softball at White County High School in Sparta, recently signed a National Letter of Intent to continue her student-athlete career at Motlow State Community College. Joining Sarah for the ceremony, seated from left, is Jenny Wilson (mother), Sarah, and Mike Wilson (father) holding Matthew Wilson (brother). Standing, from left, is Derrick Dale (travel ball coach), Sydney Wilson (sister), and Janice Morey, Motlow State head softball coach. Motlow State photo.

Transfer Renee Bolduc signs Softball Letter of Intent to join Motlow Lady Bucks

July 12, 2016

Renee Bolduc
Renee Bolduc, a sophomore transfer from Madison, Ala., recently signed a national letter of intent to continue her career as a student-athlete at Motlow State Community College. Renee played her prep softball at James Clemens High School in Madison and transfers to Motlow after spending her college freshman season at Gadsden State Community College. Joining Renee for the ceremony are her parents, Angie and Jason, seated, and Janice Morey, Motlow head softball coach. Motlow State photo.

Future Lady Bucks learn Skills Development at Motlow State Softball Camp

July 1, 2016

2016 Softball Camp
Over 30 young ladies from throughout middle Tennessee joined Motlow State head softball coach Janice Morey, assistant Randy Morey, and a number of members of the Lady Bucks' team recently for the Softball Skills Development Camp on the Motlow Moore County campus. Campers received valuable coaching in hitting, defense, base running, bunting and more during the three day camp. Motlow State photo.

Motlow State Softball Camp scheduled for June 27-29

May 19, 2016

Motlow State Community College will hold its 2016 Softball Camp for children 12 years old and younger June 27-29, according to Janice Morey, Lady Bucks' head coach.

Print camp registration (pdf)

The camp will begin each day at 9 a.m. and last until 12:30 p.m. Campers will develop fundamental skills in defense, hitting, bunting and base running.

The cost is $75 per camper. If a family has more than one child participating, the additional family members will pay only $50.

For further information contact Coach Morey at jmorey@mscc.edu or 931-393-1617.


Lady Bucks' softball season ends at midnight in Region VII Tournament

May 13, 2016

The Motlow Lady Bucks overcame a first round loss and advanced to the third round of the TCCAA/Region VII softball tournament before falling 8-0 to Chattanooga State Tuesday night at Columbia State Community College in Columbia.

The Lady Bucks finished the 2016 season, their first under Head Coach Janice Morey, with a 28-24 record. After struggling in the early season with a 5-13 record, the Lady Bucks got better as the year progressed and went 23-11 in the final two months of the campaign, including 2-2 in the tournament. Aubrey Crowell was named first team all-conference while Caroline Abernethy was named to the second team.

Motlow opened the tournament Monday morning with a hard fought 4-3 loss to Jackson State. The Lady Bucks fought back Monday evening though as freshman Ashton Watkins hit a two-run homer in the top of the seventh inning to break a 2-2 tie and carry the Lady Bucks past Roane State 4-2.

The win set the Lady Bucks up for a Tuesday afternoon must-win contest against Volunteer State. Motlow responded with perhaps its best outing of the year, slamming three home runs in a 12-1 victory over the Lady Pioneers.

The win over Volunteer set Motlow up for a scheduled 8 p.m. contest against Chattanooga State. Due to multiple extra-inning contests throughout the day, the game didn't start until almost 11 p.m. and ended after midnight as the Lady Tigers ended Motlow's season.

Riley Long was the pitching star in the Lady Bucks' win over Roane State, allowing only five hits in seven innings with four strikeouts. Motlow managed only six hits, including RBI from both Riley O'Neal and Crowell before Watkins' dramatic blast in the final inning.

The Lady Bucks were most dominant in the rout of Volunteer State. O'Neal had a pair of home runs and went 4-4 with six runs batted in. Watkins was 3-4 and added a solo home run while scoring three runs. Taylor Wolaver, Cameron Pearson and Rachel Gamble each had two hits as the Lady Bucks racked up 16 total hits against the Lady Pioneers. Pearson was splendid in the circle, scattering five hits to get the win.

Coach Morey saw a strong group of seven sophomores graduate from Motlow on Saturday, but the Lady Bucks return eight freshmen to next year's squad, including Abernethy, O'Neal and Watkins.

Visit the official website of Motlow Athletics at www.motlowsports.com for rosters, schedules, stats and more. Interact with Motlow Athletics on Facebook and Twitter.

Motlow softball sophomores
Lady Bucks' freshman Riley O'Neal, shown from a game earlier this season, hit a pair of home runs during Motlow's 12-1 victory over Volunteer State Tuesday at the Region VII Tournament in Columbia. O'Neal, who played her prep softball at Lincoln County High School in Fayetteville, went 6-12 during the tournament with two home runs and nine runs batted in. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.

Anderson walk-offs propel Lady Bucks to split with Walters State

May 2, 2016

Freshman Kenzie Jo Anderson drove in the winning run with walk-off singles in both games Friday as the Motlow Lady Bucks closed the softball regular season by splitting a four-game series with nationally-ranked Walters State at Lady Bucks Field.

TCCAA/Region VII Softball Tournament Bracket

The Lady Bucks (26-22, 19-17) battled the visiting Lady Senators, who entered the series ranked No. 13 in the nation, down to the wire in all four games. Walters won Thursday's opener 1-0 in nine innings and captured game two 2-1. Motlow won both games on Friday by 2-1 scores. Both teams now await seeding in the upcoming TCCAA/Region VII Tournament, which begins Sunday at Columbia State in Columbia.

Motlow's pitching was nothing short of spectacular during the series, as both Cameron Pearson and Riley Long held the visitors at bay. Pearson (14-8) pitched 17 total innings and allowed just 12 hits and two earned runs. Long (9-12) went 14 innings and scattered 14 hits while allowing only two earned runs.

Anderson came up big when her team needed her the most, as she has multiple times this season.

In Friday's first game with the score tied 1-1 and two outs in the bottom of the eighth, Pearson slammed a triple down the right field line and Anderson followed with the first of her game winners. In game two, Lauren Hasty reached base with a single, advanced to second on Rachel Gamble's sacrifice bunt and scored as Anderson sent the home crowd into a wild celebration.

First-year Lady Bucks' head coach Janice Morey has done a masterful job of leading her team, which spent the fall season without a head coach and not being able to play a fall schedule. After opening the year dropping their first eight TCCAA games and sporting a 5-13 overall record on Apr. 12, the Lady Bucks have gone 21-9 since then, including 19-9 in the conference.

Visit the official website of Motlow Athletics at www.motlowsports.com for rosters, schedules, stats and more. Interact with Motlow Athletics on Facebook and Twitter.

Motlow softball sophomores
Seven Motlow State sophomore softball players made their final home appearance memorable as they swept visiting Walters St. Friday afternoon in a doubleheader, winning both games 2-1. The Lady Bucks will participate in the TCCAA/Region VII Tournament beginning Sunday in Columbia. From left: Taylor Wolaver, Traci Shelton, Aubrey Crowell, Cameron Pearson, Lauren Hasty, Rachel Gamble, and Riley Long. Photo by Jeff Reed Photography.

Interact with Motlow Athletics on Facebook and Twitter.


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