The Lakewood Leopards varsity softball team will look to build off a 5-12 record in 2016 where the Leopards made it into the first round of the playoffs, but lost to Perquimans. Lakewood is hoping to put that below-average 2016 record behind them as the Leopards prepare to begin the 2017 season in early March in a strong way.
Tenth-year head coach David Yarasheski is helped by assistant coach Alan Jackson. Jackson has been assisting Yarasheski for five years and receives high praise from the head coach, who claims that he would not be able to do what he does without the help from Jackson.
Yarashski and his relatively young team are striving to not only make the playoffs this coming season, but to advance further into the playoffs than last year. He notes several players who he thinks will help him do just that, such as Madison Tart, Summer Thigpen, Lorin Hawks, Savannah Simmons, Krislyn Bullard, Peyton Crumpler and Grace Hairr.
Yarasheski’s main goal is that he wants the team to play up to their potential, something he told the them earlier this year.
“Playing up to their potential has kind of been the theme that I have discussed with them a little bit each day,” echoed the head coach.
According to Yarasheski, the Lady Leopards are looking to work on and improve in all areas of the game, but the coach admitted that they are putting special emphasis doing a better job at the plate, being more consistent on defense, and doing better on the bases.
Yarasheski is excited about the potential of several girls who have joined the team from the middle school, praising them for their athleticism.
“These girls are going to be a real plus for us. They’re good athletes, it’s just going to take them a little time to adjust to the varsity level of play,” he said.
These players are Addie Hawks, Lauren Jackson and Selena Smith.
The Leopards kicked off the 2017 season on Friday as they travel just up the road to take on their rivals, the Midway. Lakewood fell to the Lady Raiders, 12-1.
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