Area play­ers lead Chat­tanooga into NCAA Re­gion­als


Three Ring­gold and a Chicka­mauga soft­ball play­ers are mem­bers of the Chat­tanooga Mocs soft­ball team that won the South­ern Con­fer­ence crown and ad­vance to the NCAA Re­gion­als.

Ring­gold res­i­dents in­clude sopho­more Jess­lyn Stockard (Her­itage), sopho­more Sa­van­nah Gold­smith (Her­itage) and ju­nior Sam Tay­lor (Gor­don Lee).

Chicka­mauga fresh­man J.J. Hamill joins the other area play­ers who play for long­time Mocs coach Frank Reed.

Stockard, a first base­man and power hit­ter, said she’s ex­tremely proud of her team­mates and looked for­ward to mak­ing more mem­o­ries in her sec­ond year with the Navy-and­Gold.

“It feels awe­some,” she said. “It’s so ex­cit­ing. I think it’s more ex­cit­ing that we won the con­fer­ence out­right and the tour­na­ment…I couldn’t be more proud to be go­ing back to the tour­na­ment with my team.”

Chat­tanooga will travel to Auburn, Ala., to face No. 29 South Alabama. Ten­nessee Tech also is set to make the trip to take on Auburn. The Mocs take the field at 4 p.m. ET on Fri­day 4 p.m. ET.

The Mocs re­ceived the South­ern Con­fer­ence’s au­to­matic bid af­ter de­feat­ing Mercer for the South­ern Con­fer­ence Cham­pi­onship win­ning the league’s tour­na­ment cham­pi­onship Satur­day at Frost Sta­dium.

Stockard said her team is very op­ti­mistic head­ing into the tour­na­ment. “We got put in an awe­some bracket,” she said. “We’ve played ev­ery team in our bracket so we have a re­ally good chance to win.”

This will be the 10th trip to the NCAA Re­gion­als for Chat­tanooga soft­ball.

UTC first ap­peared in the NCAA Tour­na­ment in 2000 and re­turned the next four years (2000-04). Chat­tanooga qual­i­fied again in 2008 and 2009, 2011 and most re­cently in 2014.

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