|Temples is all right (or left) at first base|
|Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor|
March 27, 2004 -- Lacey Temples is so left-handed, she can't even hold a pencil correctly in her right hand.
What she can do with her right hand, though, is catch a softball.
Being left-handed made Temples' switch from an outfielder/pitcher to first baseman this season an easy transition, but Sulphur Springs head softball coach John McCullough was looking for more than that when he converted the senior.
"Lacey's stepped in and filled a big hole for us at first base because she's smart and she's aware of what going on," McCullough said. "Just being a pitcher, she already knew the bunt coverages and things like that, so she was aware of where she needed to be in different situations. She's been able to step in and fill a big hole for us."
Temples shares the first base duties with Hollie Watson. When Watson pitches, Temples is at first.
McCullough said his notion that she was a good fit on the corner was confirmed in the season opener against Allen.
"Our first game of the year -- her first varsity game at first base -- Allen hits a shot right at her, she snags it and turns a double play," he said. "She's been making some great digs in the dirt on low throws all season. "
Temples had played first base some when she was growing up. She started playing softball when she was five, joined a traveling team at age eight, was a member of the Dixie Debs team that played in the World Series, and was playing virtually year-round up until the last couple of summers, which she took off after the high school season " so I wouldn't get burned out," she said.
Softball in particular, and sports in general, has been a part of her life since she can remember.
"It gives me something to do. It's just something I've always done and been interested in," Temples said of softball. "I enjoy being around people, and I get to meet many people in softball. It's been something I've loved since I started. It's just there, it's part of me. It's who I am.
"I can't really explain it, because it's always been part of my life. Ever since I can remember, I've been at the softball field or the baseball field or at the football field."
That will change somewhat in the fall when she enrolls at the University of North Texas to major in business marketing and finance. She is already taking concurrent college courses in English and government. She has worked in the office at the family business, Temples Trailer Sales, for years, so she has a solid idea of where she's going.
She has has an idea where this year's team is going after starting the 11-4A season with a three-year record of 30-0 in district play.
"I have really high expectations this year. I think we'll go really far," Temples said. "We have to just keep playing our mental game and not let anybody else get to us. I think right now, we're kind of all feeling pressure because we're all so nervous at the start of district.
"We're trying to go 40-0, but we know you can't go 40-0 unless you go 10-0, 30-0, 31-0. But, 40-0, that's something we really want."
Besides their immense talent, the Lady Cats also have something else going for them, she explained.
"We have unbelievable team chemistry. We walk out on the field and it's like we're all family. We all act like we're sisters. There may be a squabble here or there, but we always put it behind us."