It wasn’t going to be an easy task for the Bradwell softball team.
The young Tiger squad opened the season Tuesday at home against a more-experienced Ware County team. The Lady Gators wasted no time in taking advantage of Lady Tiger throwing errors to win, 16-0, in three innings.
Fortunately for the Lady Tigers, this first matchup against the Gators didn’t count as a Region 3B-AAAAA loss. The Bradwell girls will have time to prepare for a rematch against the Gators on Aug. 29 in Waycross.
The Gators have several returning veterans who helped them go 17-10 overall and 9-4 in region play last year, earning second place in 3B-AAAAA.
Lady Tiger MacKenzie Stewart, a sophomore who started as a varsity pitcher last year, allowed one run in the first inning. Head softball coach Sharyl Eastlake said Stewart did have a few issues in the second and third inning.
As for throwing errors, the infielders and outfielders still may be wiping away the summer rust. Jakaria Fleming made a spectacular dive and tumbling catch in center field, but two plays later missed a routine fly ball.
A few tosses to first were rushed and overthrown, and first-year catcher Melissa Gregory still is learning the position.
“Melissa is talented but has never played the position,” Eastlake said. “She will improve with more practice.”