We at WGNS Primetime Sports wanted to somehow spotlight area baseball and softball teams that had their seasons cut short by the coronavirus.
We contacted many coaches about the chance to speak to their school, fans and especially their players - and share their thoughts on this unforgettable 2020 class of athletes. We didn't do an interview, we didn't put restrictions on the number of minutes or even seconds they spoke. We just wanted to give coaches a chance to speak to their players and fans. Many of them used the opportunity and below is the audio from each submission. We put all of the submissions together into a show, which aired on WGNS and WGNSRadio.com, which you can also listen back to below.
On behalf of Jon Dinkins and I, we are heartbroken this happened. We would much rather be behind the microphone broadcasting games all over Rutherford County. It's just another thing the coronavirus took from us.
For the seniors - their final at bats were yanked away by the invisible enemy. It's not right. It wasn't supposed to end this way and that makes it tough to swallow.
The disappointment is deep. It's a gut punch. But I know - and the players and coaches know - the situation is bigger than sports. The public health threat is real - affecting friends, family, coaches and fans.
However, that doesn't make it hurt less. Especially for the seniors - some which won't be so lucky as to continue playing after all of this.
This is just a small way we can publicly say thank you. And when things get back to "normal," whatever that looks like - we will never take our love for high school sports for granted.
BLACKMAN BASEBALL COACH BARRY VETTER:
BLACKMAN SOFTBALL COACH BOB FORTEL:
CENTRAL MAGNET BASEBALL COACH JASON PATTERSON:
CENTRAL MAGNET SOFTBALL COACH DUSTY STEARNS:
EAGLEVILLE BASEBALL COACH BRANDON BASSHAM:
LA VERGNE ASSISTANT SOFTBALL COACH SHAWN DIGIANFELICE:
MTCS BASEBALL COACH JAMIE CARVER:
OAKLAND BASEBALL COACH MACK HAWKS:
OAKLAND SOFTBALL COACH CHARLOTTE PEAY:
RIVERDALE SOFTBALL COACH CHRISTY BINGHAM:
ROCKVALE SOFTBALL COACH STEVEN WILDER:
STEWARTS CREEK BASEBALL COACH MIKE BARTLETT:
SMYRNA BASEBALL COACH DAVID LOOPER:
SIEGEL SOFTBALL COACH SHAWN MIDDLETON:
SMYRNA SOFTBALL COACH LONNIE DRAYTON: