Youth the truth at Louisville High School

By Austin Bishop
Winston County Journal

When Chad Gibson says his Lady Wildcats are going to be young, he’s
not stretching the truth. Not even a little bit.

The roster for Gibson’s first Louisville High School fast-pitch squad
features 10 seventh graders, eight eighth graders, eight ninth
graders, two juniors and three seniors.

Gibson says the fact this is his first year as coach of the Lady
Wildcats, combined with the youth, really works out well.

“Everybody is equal and starting from the same place,” he said. “As
far as experience goes, not many of them have played in a lot of
varsity games. I don’t’ have any prior knowledge of anybody who’s out
there. There is a lot of competition for playing time and we just
need to feed off each other and get better and better. Nobody has
claimed a spot. There is competition all over the field. With me
being new, I really embraced the competition and made that part of
what we are about this year.”

What little experience Gibson’s Lady ‘Cats were going to have came
crashing down when slugger Tyesha Davis suffered a knee injury in the
final basketball game of the year.

“The strength of this team is going to be at the plate,” Gibson said.
“We are going to be able to bunt and run and get on base and put
pressure on the other teams. We are going to try and put up a lot of
runs to support our pitching.”

It didn’t take long for Gibson to figure out where everything starts
in fast-pitch softball.

“It’s all about pitching,” Gibson said. “We have a freshman pitcher
(Brooklyn Hill) and we are going to just build around her and go from
there. I don’t know if she totally realizes that pitching is a
leadership role, but it is. That will come.”

One of the key seniors on the squad is catcher Brittany Lucas. “With
all the youth we have, we are going to count on her to keep us
focused and headed in the right direction.”

Louisville dropped its opener to Philadelphia 17-2 on Tuesday, and
now is set to visit Noxapater on Thursday, then make a trip to
Philadelphia on Saturday to take on both Meridian High School and
Choctaw Central.

“We really didn’t play that poorly in the field,” Gibson said of his
team’s loss to Philly. “And we only had two errors that I saw in the
book. We just had a lot of walks and every time they got a hit, there
were a lot of runners on base. Getting on base, then getting hits are
the key and that’s what they did.”