Written by David Mann
Albany, Ga – The Darton State College Lady Cavaliers are the No. 10-ranked team in the country, the NJCAA announced in a preseason poll Thursday.
“This may be the best preseason poll we’ve had,” Head Darton Softball Coach David Dews said. “I’m certainly happy for them, but we want to be able to look at it in a mature way. Tenth is good, but we want to be No. 1 in the end.”
A talented class of sophomores who fell one game short of a Region title in 2012 return to the program, including All-America outfielder Chelsea Showers of Atlanta, All-Region 3B
Kelsea Ogletree of Marietta, All-Region catcher Holly Smith of Dudley, and LHP Jenny Willis of Dacula.
Dews brought in nine freshman student-athletes led by RHP Jostlyn Higgerson of Enterprise, Ala., 1B Melissa Dearth of Loganville, SS Bree Wells of Canton, OF Sierra Newman of Bryan County, and 2B Kelsey Swinson of Oxford.
“We have a lot of good freshmen,” Dews said. “Good players who are good team-oriented players. We play together really well. They’re very coachable and have high character.”
They’ll open up next week in a double-header against Andrew College at 2 p.m., at Darton, on Jan. 31. Then they’ll host 11 teams for the annual Darton Softball Spring Tournament, Feb 1-2.