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FALL PREVIEW: Softball looks to improve on last year’s success
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The Lady Tigers softball team will be looking to improve on a successful first season under head coach Justin Rickett. - photo by Rio White

Dawson County Lady Tigers Softball 

Head Coach: Justin Rickett, second season

2021 season record: 16-21 overall, 11-10 in Region 7-3A (fourth place), fifth place at GHSA Class 3A State Tournament

Key returners: Layne Bailey (Jr.), Lauren Kurtz (Sr.), Reese Moore (Sr.), Micah Burruss (So.), Ace Cochran (So.)

Season Outlook: 

The Lady Tigers are coming off a successful first season under head coach Justin Rickett, winning six of their last nine regular season games before making a deep run in the Class 3A State Tournament.

They swept Region 5 champions Westminster in the first round of the tournament before taking two of three games from Tattnall County to make the final group of eight teams. After losing two of the next three games, the Lady Tigers finished fifth overall at the State Tournament. 

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Last season, the Lady Tigers made a deep run into the state playoffs, including an upset of Region 5 champions Westminster. - photo by Jacob Smith


One of the biggest challenges facing the team will be replacing the seven seniors from last year’s squad.

Those losses will primarily affect the offense, as returning players Layne Bailey and Reese Moore are set to be starting pitchers. 

However, Bailey and senior Lauren Kurtz will be important offensive forces heading into next season and will be tasked with helping the younger players adjust to the competition.

Bailey is coming off an first-team All-Region season in which she led the team with 31 runs batted in and 29 runs scored. She also had an 11-9 pitching record. 

Kurtz, a second-team All-Region selection, will have the chance to move up the batting order, coming off a season where she led the team with 13 walks and finished second to Bailey with 24 runs scored.

A couple of key younger players include sophomores Micah Burruss and Ace Cochran. Burruss played in 31 games as a freshman, posting a .299 batting average with 23 hits and 22 RBI.

In 20 games, Cochran put up a .275 batting average and had 11 hits across 48 plate appearances.

The Lady Tigers begin their season with a tournament hosted by North Hall on Saturday, Aug. 6, with the opponent set to be Jefferson.