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Panther players speak about skilled positions
Cassie Standards and Charlee Coursey kept them selves in top shape by playing recreational softball through the summer. Standard returns to the Lady Panther squad as their four-year starting pitcher and Coursey was tapped as the replacement for the Lady Panthers' catcher who graduated. - photo by Phgoto by Patty Leon
While most players on the varsity squad were startes last season some are fitting into the new roles this year.
Last season's starting catcher Courtney Miles graduated leaving head coach Jerome Standard with the decision to count on sophomore Charlee Coursey to start behind the plate.
"It makes me feel good and confident, she said about Standard tapping her as Miles' replacement.
As Coursey prepares for the challenge she said the position is more complicated than people think saying it requires technical, mental and physical abilities.
"People think that it's just a sit down position but there is a lot more to it," she said. "You have to be able to throw the ball to the correct spot, you have to learn to position yourself for the throw and it takes its toll on your arm. "
She explained how a catcher goes from a kneeling position to a throwing position without standing all the way up.
"You don't come all the way and throw it because it will mess up the whole throw," she said. "I used to always come all the way up and throw it wasting three seconds but now I have it where I throw it on time, its' kind of keyed into my brain."
Like many on the Panther squad Coursey is a multi-sport athlete. When not swinging the bat Coursey is dribbling and shooting the hoops on the Lady Panther basketball team.
"When I'm playing basketball I like it better than softball and visa versa," she said.
Although a sophomore she has a goal set for her future and said she is doing well academically in the hopes to be a Bulldog for the University of Georgia.
Entering her senior year and her fourth season as a starting pitcher for the Lady Panthers, Cassie Standard said she knows her team can help her go the distance.
"I think we got a pretty good team this year," she said. "We did lose some players last year but I don't think we are going to do too bad so it's not going to be that bad on me."
Standard said she has only one thing going through her head when she is facing a batter.
"I better throw a strike," she said. "It's a whole lot harder than most people think and it takes a whole different mindset. You have to focus on every pitch."
Her mantra is practice, practice, practice and she said she participates in other sports to help her stay in top form.
Besides softball, she plays golf, and was a member of the weightlifting team. She said she thinks college scouts might not take her seriously as a pitcher because of her petite stature.
To overcome that she weight lifts and said she needs to become a beast. 
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