Patriots Softball Opens New Era - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Patriots Softball Opens New Era

There is something to be said for taking the field for the first time to start a season. But when that season is the first in school history, it adds a little extra excitement.

"We're a little antsy to get out here and play," said junior outfielder Ashley Cagle, a transfer from Grayson County College. "We haven't played together as a team since our fall season was over with."

"We couldn't practice a whole lot in the fall," added freshman utility player Kristen Akin from Spring Hill High School, "so we're excited to be on our new field and get to try it out for the first time."

That new field is part of a multi-million dollar softball/baseball complex that will be second to none, although it's still a little ways away from completion.

"You're able to be patient with it, knowing you're going to have probably the best facility in the conference and one of the best in the region," said Head Coach Mike Reed.

"It's awesome," said Akin. "I know we're so lucky to have it. Compared to other places, we're very fortunate."

While an extremely young team, the Patriots plan to be just as impressive as the field they are playing on.

"We've set some very high goals for ourselves," said Reed. "We're going into the season with our number one goal, is expect to win every game. Are those high goals for a first year program? absolutely, but we feel like that's what we want to shoot for. We think we have the talent level if we come together and get some of the newness out of the way. We have the same talent level of everybody we'll play if not better."

And, every step of the way, the Patriots know they won't be chasing records; They'll be setting them.

"It's just so exciting because we get to lay down the foundations," said Cagle. "We get to start the traditions of this school and as long as coach Reed is our coach we will have winning seasons and we are going to have a great future."

The Patriots open their season at home on February 20 against Northwood.

Kevin Berns reporting.

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