ACCS’s Melton signs softball scholarship with Copiah-Lincoln
NATCHEZ — Steve Melton and Forrest Foster may relate to Kailtan Melton differently, but they both saw the same thing as soon as they observed Kaitlan play softball.
Steve is Kaitlan’s father, Foster Kaitlan’s coach, but both men said they knew immediately that Kaitlan had what it took to play softball in college.
The arrangements were finally made Wednesday, as Kaitlan, a senior at Adams County Christian, signed a letter of intent to continue her softball career at Copiah-Lincoln Community College.
“It’s a relief to finally get it out of the way,” Kaitlan said. “I’ve been working at this since I was 6, and it’s always been a dream of mine to get a softball scholarship.”
Steve said he was very proud of his daughter, and was glad she would have the opportunity to play softball close to home at Co-Lin.
“I coached her from age 5 to 12, and even back then, I knew this day was coming,” Steve said. “She always had the heart and the ability to excel, and she always gave 100 percent in all the sports she played.”
Foster said Kaitlan’s speed is what stood out the most to him, but there are several other aspects of her game that are strengths for her.
“You can’t teach speed, and she has a ton of it,” Foster said.
“She’s also extremely good at playing third base. She can play anywhere, but we needed her at third because of her speed. She was really good at covering the bunt — just about no one could reach on a bunt if they hit it to her. I knew the whole time she could play in college.”
Foster also praised Kaitlan’s hitting, and said she led the team in batting average this past season.
“She was our leadoff hitter, and I think she was 27 of 28 in stolen bases,” Foster said. “I know she only got thrown out once. I never had to say anything to her — she showed up ready to play.
“I’m sure going to miss her. I wish she had eight little sisters.”
Kaitlan will be playing for a strong softball program at Co-Lin that has gone 240-86 since head coach Allen Kent took over nine years ago. The Lady Wolves have won the MACJC State Championship three of the last five seasons.
Kent said Kaitlan’s speed stood out the most in recruiting her, but other aspects of her game are still to be developed.
“She has a lot of potential in other areas,” Kent said. “She’s really hard-nosed, and she’s not afraid to slide, dive and do all that good stuff.”
And even though most of her experience is at third, Kent said he can envision Kaitlan being flexible on defense.
“I could also see her using her speed in the outfield,” Kent said.
Steve said he was looking forward to watching her play in college.
“I always instilled it in both of my kids to push it to the max, and go all out,” Steve said. “I’m very, very proud of her.”