|Eight C-P seniors looking to make name for themselves|
|Tyler Clifton | News-Telegram Sports Writer|
March 27, 2004 -- COMO -- There's a sign on the back of the home team's dugout that sports Como-Pickton Lady Eagle Softball 1999 State Semi-finalist.
It's something that motivates the Lady Eagles every time they hit the field. The program has already done some special things, as the 1999 team clearly shows, but the 2004 CPHS group wants its name in the same class.
Eight Lady Eagle seniors enter Friday's play having won 82 of 108 games in four years, an average of just under 21 wins per season. Katheryn Humphrey, Shannon Russell, Chelsea Harrison, Taylor Moss, Ashley Darby, Christy Hunt, Charlot Harper and Brittney Wright have a solid shot at winning 90 games, and although this group already deserves to be remembered as one of the best in school history, it still wouldn't take the luster away from reaching such a milestone.
"It would be a really special thing to accomplish," Hunt said. "Most of us have played together since T-ball, and we won state three years in a row in summer league, so we've been through a lot."
CPHS has set some pretty lofty goals, but there's no reason they shouldn't, considering the team's knack for success. As a result, nothing short of a trip to the state playoffs will be accepted.
Moss came along her sophomore year and fit right in with her fellow Lady Eagles. She said there's a strong sense of togetherness with this group and attributes it to how the team has been able to win so many games. The team philosophy couldn't be more evident than when the girls go to Moss' house and hit balls off a pitching machine.
"We're a close-knit group," Moss said. "We never fight, and we often hang out together on the weekends.
"We know when it's time to get serious, because we want to go to state. We're spending the extra hours it takes to get better."
It all started in 2001, when a group of seven freshmen helped lead CPHS to a 27-6 record. It jumped to 29-6 in 2002, before taking a slight dip to 18-11 last season. The Lady Eagles are currently 8-3, and winning 18 games and 100 for their careers isn't unrealistic, should this team get on a hot streak.
Debbie Tarrant helped mold these girls into winners once they hit the softball field. Not only did she lead them as coach, but she helped motivate them to settle for nothing but the best.
"Coach Tarrant made us want to work harder," Moss said. "She pushed us to become better, because we all knew how good we were. We believed in ourselves and knew we could go far."
Hunt agrees that good leadership combined with a solid effort from everyone involved has given the team unlimited potential.
"Coach Tarrant did even more off the field with us than she did on it," Hunt said. "She was like a second mom more than anything and was always there for us."
This team feels it can once again go far in the playoffs, and the past three years speak for themselves.
"It hurts to lose," Hunt said. "We don't want to feel that again, especially the seniors."