Frances can't stop Lady Cardinals

By Anthony Rhoads, Doug Gorman and Jeffery Armstrong

The Jonesboro Lady Cardinals finally got to participate in the Brunswick Invitational softball tournament this past weekend. The round-robin event was delayed by a week because of Hurricane Frances.

Rain still played a big role in last week's tournament, but the Lady Cardinals did manage to play three times, winning twice.

Plenty of offensive punch: The Jonesboro Lady Cardinals flexed their offensive muscles in Tuesday's 16-0 region victory against North Atlanta.

Donisha Harrison had four RBIs and Rachel Nutter three to lead the team to the win.

Best kept secret: The People Baptist Academy football team is only in its third season of existence, but already the squad is making a loud statement. A year ago, the team made the playoffs in only its second season. This year, heading its road game with Bible Baptist in Savannah Friday night, the squad has lost just once.

Fine swine: Lovejoy junior softball pitcher Kyle Martin has an unusual nickname n "Piggy." It was given to her by her father because she was a fat toddler and it's stuck ever since. Everyone, including her teammates, calls her Piggy and it doesn't bother the slim-and-trim Martin at all. In fact, Martin has fun with her nickname.

"There's so many ways you can have fun with the name Pig. My teammates call me ?The Notorious P.I.G.' and other names like that," Martin said. "If I buy a painting, they say it will be a ?Pig-asso.' I have a blast with my nickname."

What a play: Mundy's Mill shortstop Keyanna Shipp made a nice defensive play in Tuesday's softball game against Lovejoy. Lovejoy's Kemyatta Chance-Hall hit a grounder to third baseman Brandi Bullard. The ball bounced off Bullard's glove right to Shipp, who made a great throw to first base to get Chance-Hall out.

Shipp, a sophomore, also makes nice plays in the classroom n she currently sports a 4.0 grade point average.

That's the reason: Lovejoy junior volleyball player Stephanie Shugart said the reason her team has gotten off to a hot start is because of the influx of new players on the squad.

"We've got a good setter in Diana Chow and Falyn Coleman transferred from North Clayton and they've helped us out," Shugart said.

Shugart's teammate Julia Neal also said Lovejoy has stepped it up a notch this season.

"We play hard every night," Neal said. "We've got our eyes on the state playoffs."

Nice to be close to home: One advantage Eagle's Landing Christian Academy has by being a part of the GHSA this year is definitely travel.

Eagle's Landing Christian head volleyball coach Jim Barlow is definitely glad the school made the jump from the Georgia Independent School Association to the GHSA.

Last year, the closest away game the Lady Chargers had was an hour-and-a-half away. This year, other than traveling to Athens Academy on Sept. 25, the farthest ELCA will have to travel will be about 30 minutes.

"It's so nice to not have to travel all over the state," Barlow said. "Being in the GHSA is definitely better for academics because we have shorter road trips."

The Eagle's Landing Christian volleyball team has made a smooth transition to the GHSA.

The team won the Henry County championship Saturday and is now 14-4 this season. The Lady Chargers went 4-0 in the county tournament and beat Union Grove in the finals.

"I think we'll be competitive in the single-A and double-A classification," Barlow said.

Good games: Luella pitcher Brooke Loudermilk had a pair of good games Monday and Tuesday. Monday in a 6-0 victory over Griffin, she struck out 15 and had a perfect game going into the sixth inning until an error spoiled the effort.

Tuesday in a 3-2 victory over Upson-Lee in eight innings, Loudermilk struck out 17 and allowed three hits.