Lady Rebels shooting for top prize at state

Published 12:00 am Saturday, May 31, 2003

NATCHEZ &045; Finishing second at the state tournament last year didn’t set well with the Adams Christian Lady Rebels.

So this time they are shooting for the big prize.

The Lady Rebels go into today’s five-team state tournament with the No. 1 seed with the hopes of not coming up short this time. They open up the one-day, double-elimination tournament at noon.

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&uot;I think we’re ready to play,&uot; AC head coach Rick Fife said. &uot;I think these last couple of days have been very intense practices. After finishing second last year, I think they really want to win the championship this year.&uot;

The Lady Rebels earned a first-round bye and will meet the winner of the Jackson Academy-Jackson Prep game at noon today. They enter the tournament on a roll of sorts, but the world of slow-pitch softball depends mostly on hitting and defense.

And hitting has been up and down of late.

The Lady Rebels will likely go with Kelsey Ward on the mound, although Meghan Marchbanks can come in to pitch as well.

&uot;We were up until Tuesday and fell out of our zone a little bit,&uot; Fife said. &uot;But the last couple of days in practice we’ve found that groove again, I hope. We’ve found that groove again in practice. It was the overall lineup, really. We were getting them on base. We just couldn’t move them around.

&uot;Defensively we’ve been consistent at times as well as offensively &045; both are really different times of the season. Hopefully this weekend we can put it all together.&uot;

The finals will come at 7:30 p.m., and the Lady Rebels very well could meet Parklane in the finals again. The Lady Pioneers are seeded No. 2 in the tournament and will open at 10:30 a.m. against Lamar, the No. 3 seed.

Both AC and Parklane are familiar with each other &045; the Lady Rebels four of the five meetings this year with Parklane’s lone win an 9-8 decision. But don’t look down the road just yet.

&uot;You’ve got to come out and play well,&uot; Fife said. &uot;That could be the difference in the tournament. That could determine the whole tournament &045; that opening game. They (Parklane) are about the same as we are. They’re a little younger than we are, and they graduated more than we did. If we play our game, we should be fine.&uot;