CHS poised for big year on diamond

Friday, March 29, 2013
Cloverdale senior Bradanne Toney makes a stop on defense in a game during her junior year. (Banner Graphic Archive/CAINE GARDNER)

CLOVERDALE -- The Cloverdale softball team is coming off an extremely successful 18-9 season and, since last year ended, the squad has been looking forward to the 2013 team.

The Clovers have a difficult road ahead of them with defending state champion South Putnam as their opponent on Monday and Tuesday, but the veteran group is ready to make a name for itself.

"They'll hold their own this year," Clovers coach Brian Knapp said. "I'm looking forward to it."

The Clovers are preparing to play a fast-paced, offensive game that could give opponents fits.

"We play fast-paced," Knapp said. "It's always fast-paced. It's got to be fast-paced. I'll have power hitting, also, but I've got a lot of speed this year and it will be utilized."

While the pitching is a work in progress the Clovers have senior leaders throughout that will keep the team steadily scoring until a presence from the rubber gets established, Knapp said.

"Bradanne Toney, she will be a strength," Knapp said. "Katt Raisor, she'll be a strength. Adri Patterson (a junior) will be a strength."

Cloverdale has a few holes to fill. They lost some key players to graduation and another to illness, but a number of players are getting ready to step in.

"I've got two freshmen that have made varsity this year and that will help a lot," Knapp said. "It'll be interesting. We've got weaknesses but hopefully we can get around that with the sticks."

Like the other spring teams, the Clovers haven't had a chance to get outside to practice very much.

Getting thrown into the fire with a game Monday will be a big test but if Cloverdale can step up, it will establish a solid ground to build on throughout the year.

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