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Raw Chatter

This area is proud to have seen two of its finest prep girls' softball teams fair as well as they did in state playoff competition last week.

I'm speaking, of course, about the impressive seasons put together by the Thomson High Lady Bulldogs and the Briarwood Academy Lady Buccaneers.

Both of those teams served their schools and communities with lots of pride and I am personally proud to say that I enjoyed every game I covered with both teams -- the playoffs being most special.

Thomson finished the season with a most-impressive record of 26-8-1. They made it all the way to the Georgia High School Association (GSSA) Elite Eight Tournament in Columbus -- the quarter-finals of the Class AAA Girls' Softball State Playoffs. And I couldn't be more proud of them.

I'm equally as proud of the Lady Buccaneers, who finished runners-up in the Georgia Independent Schools Association (GISA).

They eventually lost to Terrell Academy, who claimed their third state championship for the third time since 2005. The finals of the GISA state playoff tournament were played at Walter B. Williams, Jr. Complex in Milledgeville.

Both teams were fortunate in that they had talented players. And from time to time, different players stepped up for the teams at critical times -- whether it was making a timely defensive play or getting a clutch hit at just the right time. I simply can't say enough good things about the players from both schools.

They've made us all proud!

It's great what these players accomplished this season. And it's great that both teams had exceptional coaches helping them reach the heights they did. At Thomson those coaches included Jason Osborn, Bennie Hester and Katie Sutherland. And at Briarwood Academy, it was Hannah Demore and Price Chalker.

During the regular season, I tried to cover as many games as possible at both schools. The same was true of playoff coverage. Admittedly, it was difficult to cover both teams since I cover sports primarily by myself. I've often wished I could cut myself into two people, but I realize that's not possible.

Simply put, I did the best I could do under the circumstances. I personally believe that we provided the best softball coverage ever extended to either of our local schools. I'm most proud of that coverage and sincerely appreciate the space for which my boss, Todd Rainwater, allowed me for stories and photographs of girls' softball this season.

I had a blast covering both teams and wish both softball programs nothing but the best in future years. I hope I'm still around next year to offer even better coverage for both schools.

Web posted on Thursday, October 29, 2009

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