Contrary to any shadow spotting by groundhogs, spring will officially start for local sports teams Monday.
The first day of practice will signal the start of seasons for the WCHS tennis, baseball, softball, track and boys soccer teams. One of the busiest sports seasons will be filled with new faces and big expectations.
Here’s a quick rundown of big storylines leading into the spring:
The arrival of Trice Powers – A lot has been made about the ousting of Adam Childs (and rightfully so). Despite what feelings people may have about getting rid of a coach who made the Pioneers a perennial district contender, none of that should color the perception of Powers.
owers has the bloodline of coaching success. His father led Riverdale to multiple state tournaments, including a couple years when Trice was on the field for the Warriors.
Warren County won over 20 games last year, so the pressure to win will be immediate.
Does Matt Jackson’s championship touch translate? – There’s no question Jackson, the new WCHS soccer coach, knows how to win titles. He’s won five straight CTC titles at the middle school.
But, with every sport it seems, replicating that success at the next level has been a challenge. Jackson isn’t backing down from the expectation though. He came out when he was hired and made sure people knew his goal was a District 6-AAA title.
Nobody in the area knows the talent at hand better than Jackson, so it makes sense for him to be so confident, so early. Here’s hoping by May, Jackson is celebrating his sixth straight championship.
Does the Lady Pioneer softball team have an encore ready? – Coach Gooby Martin’s crew blew away the field last season in District 6-AAA. The Lady Pioneers relished demolishing teams last year, punctuated by a 20-3 victory over Cookeville en route to 10-0 regular season in district. Taking out years of frustrations on opponents was extra special last spring, but it puts the target on the Lady Pioneers this year.
There’s plenty of reason to believe they’re more than ready for the challenge.
Ashton Whiles and Maddie Cantrell are as good as any pitching combination in the district. Hailey Wood and Hope Mullican anchor a stout defense. If that’s not enough, supporting players from last year’s runs are ready for bigger roles and a talented freshman class is waiting in the wing as well.
Spring will bring with it warmer weather, but for Warren County, the only W’s that matter are wins.