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Colleton Prep High School

Colleton Prep softball begins quest for AA title


By David Shelton

Senior Writer

Walterboro – With the regular season behind them, the Colleton Prep softball team has set their collective sights on the SCISA Class AA playoffs, which begin on May 12th in Lexington.

Colleton Prep finished a solid regular season with a 20-3 record and heads into the tournament on a solid roll. Colleton Prep opens the playoffs with a game against Carolina Academy. The other teams in their initial four-team bracket are Marlboro Academy and Thomas Sumter Academy.

The other four-team AA bracket includes Thomas Heyward, Pee Dee Academy, Robert E. Lee Academy and two-time defending state champion Williamsburg Academy. Colleton Prep also enters the postseason as a defending champion, winning the Class A title in 2016.

Thomas Heyward has played in the state finals in each of the last two years, losing to Williamsburg. Carolina Academy has won five state titles and Pee Dee is the only team to beat Williamsburg this season.

First-year head coach Ken Wilson says his club appears to be focused and ready for the jump in competition and intensity of the playoffs.

“I think we’re ready to see how we stack up,” Wilson said. “AA is a tough bracket. We have played some of these teams and we know the competition will be very strong. But we have a good team and we have a chance.”

 Colleton Prep’s strength throughout the regular season has been hitting. The Warhawks are hitting about .380 as a team as the playoffs begin with two hitters over .500. Eighth-grader Weslin Jones, the second baseman and an effective slapper, is hitting .560. Sophomore Elizabeth Anne Dean is hitting right at .500, up from .280 last season. Several others are hitting over .400.

“We have hit extremely well all season, and we’ve hit good pitching well,” Wilson said. “We really haven’t seen pitching that we could not hit. We put the ball in play and I feel confident about our ability to score some runs.

“The key for us is defense. When we show up defensively and make the plays, we’re a tough team to beat. We’ve been pretty consistent defensively but we’ve had some bad moments as well. It’s not so much errors but more so when you make those errors.”

The team leadership continues to come from three seniors – Penelope Tuten, Patricia Utsey and Haley Wilson.

Colleton Prep continues to use three pitchers on a regular basis with sophomore Anne Garrett Carter, Meredith Ware and Wilson. All three play defensively on the infield as well, with Tuten working as the starting catcher.

Colleton Prep’s baseball team just missed out on the Class AA state playoffs this season, finishing with a 10-9 overall record and a 7-5 region record. The Warhawks closed out the regular season with a 13-1 win over John Paul II with senior Christopher Reeves recording a season-high 11 strikeouts.

Other senior leaders on this year’s team included Nick Padgett, Josh Spooner, Lawson Griffith, Anthony Simmons, Will Hughes, Tanner Marsh and Brantley Hutson.



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