Mesko racking up K's

By Doug Gorman and Anthony Rhoads

Eagle's Landing junior pitcher Terri Mesko has been racking up the strikeouts this season.

In her last four games, she has 71 strikeouts, including a 21-strikeout performance in a 1-0 loss to Stockbridge on Tuesday.

n Not the head coach anymore but he's still around: Last school year, Blake Lyons stepped down as head coach of the baseball and softball teams at Eagle's Landing.

This year, he's staying on as an assistant for the softball team.

"I'm pretty much in a consultant role," Lyons said. "(New head coach Toby Evans) is still learning the ropes."

Evans was an assistant last year at Eagle's Landing and is in his first year as a head coach.

Another one of Lyons' former assistants, Brian Bradley, is in his first year as head softball coach at the new Dutchtown High School.

"He's a great guy," Lyons said.

n Good start: The Luella Lady Lions volleyball team is only in its second year but is off to a solid start.

The Lady Lions are 4-1 after beating Banneker and Mary Persons Tuesday.

Luella gets back into action today in a tri-match at Eagle's Landing Christian Academy. Dutchtown will also be playing.

The ELCA Lady Chargers didn't beat Jonesboro Tuesday but made a solid showing for themselves against the Lady Cardinals, who finished 33-1 last year. The Lady Chargers didn't beat Jonesboro but held their own, losing two games to one.

n Early start to the school year, early start to the season: The early start to the school year definitely had local coaches trying to work around their practice schedules this year in Henry County, where school started Aug. 2.

"For us, we had our planning period the week the week we normally have camp," Stockbridge head football coach Danny Fairbanks said. "It's rushed for us. You can't have a true camp."

Stockbridge made the most of the situation, holding practice sessions at 1 and 6 p.m. during that week.

n Road trip: The Mt. Vernon Crusaders, a Georgia Christian Association eight-man football team, opened its season last week with a 69-6 victory against Lake Dow Christian. Friday night the Crusaders play against Brunswick Christian. It will be the first of two games for the squad on the Georgia coast. Later this year, the Crusaders play against Bible Baptist in Savannah.

n High-octane offense: It didn't take long for the Mt. Vernon football team to flex its muscles on offense last week. The squad rolled up more than 400 yards and scored on every series but one.

n Waiting game: The Jonesboro Lady Cardinals' softball team is getting its season started later than most squads in the Southern Crescent. Jonesboro won't open its season until next Thursday at home against Henry County. A year ago, both schools went to the state sectionals.

Henry County has opened its 2004 season. In last week's South Gwinnett tournament, the Ladyhawks finished with a 2-1 record.

n Well-deserved honor: Kendrick Middle School teacher Lonnie White was recently honored by Bell South and the Atlanta Braves Excellence in Education Program. In additions to his excellent teaching skills, White has also worked with area track and field athletes, serving as a coach at both the high school and AAU levels. Several of his former athletes have gone on to earn track scholarships.

(A prep notebook will run each Thursday during the fall sports season).