Breaking News

North Murray High School Mountaineers

October 23, 2013

Away from home

Road to Columbus for North Murray, Northwest softball is a winding path

For North Murray High School’s softball team, today could bring the program’s first trip to Columbus.

For Northwest Whitfield, the second round is just another step on the road to defending a state title.

The Lady Mountaineers and Lady Bruins have different perspectives, program histories and levels of success, but both teams want to accomplish the same thing today when they begin their respective best-of-three series in the Class 3A and Class 4A state playoffs.

Advancing.

Northwest travels to Atlanta to face Marist in the Class 4A bracket, with the first game of today’s doubleheader starting at 4 p.m. North Murray plays at Carnesville’s Franklin County in the Class 3A postseason, with the doubleheader starting at 5 p.m.

If necessary, a winner-takes-all third game will be Thursday.

The winners of second-round series advance to each classification’s eight-team, double-elimination state tournament, which will be held Oct. 31 through Nov. 2 in Columbus at the South Commons Softball Complex.

North Murray

In 2011, the Lady Mountaineers (17-18) reached the state postseason for the first time, advancing to the second round of the Class 2A state playoffs before losing to eventual state champions Buford. Last season, Franklin County swept North Murray in the first round of the Class 3A bracket.

Now the Lady Mountaineers want to make it farther than before and have a rematch game to provide a little extra motivation.

“Our big goal this season was to go to Columbus,” North Murray coach Steve Granger said. “Down below that, our goal was to be region champs. We gave ourselves a chance to do that as we were playing in that ball game. So here we are playing in a series with a shot to go to Columbus. You have to like that.”

The Lady Mountaineers entered the Region 5-3A tournament seeded fifth and finished second behind Ringgold. In the first game of the first-round series against Banks County, North Murray trailed 8-1 with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning but recorded eight consecutive hits and won 9-8. The Lady Mountaineers rolled in the second game, 12-2, to sweep through the opening round.

“We’re just going to keep the same approach we have all year — go out and play seven innings,” Granger said. “Here at the end, it has paid off for us. We played seven innings in the first game last week.”

North Murray would rather do something new — start quick.

“We want an intense game but we don’t want anything that dramatic,” said Samantha Stafford, a senior catcher for the Lady Mountaineers.

In last season’s series, Franklin County beat North Murray 6-3 and 12-4.

Granger, an assistant at the time to then-head coach Daphne Winkler, remembers how quick the Lady Lions were running the bases.

“Everything I found out is they’re about the same — they’re fast,” Granger said of this year’s Region 8 champs. “They don’t have a lot of power but are quick and can steal bases.”

Playing that type of team comes down to three important things, Granger said.

“No extra bases, make the plays we’re supposed to make and eliminate the walks,” he said. “If we can do those things, then I like our chances.”

Text Only
North Murray High School Mountaineers
  • s-CCHS softball 8.jpg On a mission

    The local girls who visited the Dominican Republic last week on a mission trip through Score International tell a matching story.
    Toward the end of a visit to Pasitos de Jesus, a girls orphanage in Boca Chica, the children began singing the Gospel song “Mighty to Save” to their visitors.
    “It sent chills down your spine,” said Kala Franks, a rising senior at Coahulla Creek High School. “I felt they were ministering to me rather than us ministering to them.”

    June 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • NW softball state championship file 1 mlh.jpg In the lineup again

    When Northwest Whitfield repeated as the Georgia High School Association Class 4A softball state champion last fall, that appeared to be the last time the majority of the Lady Bruins’ senior class would be teammates on the diamond.
    Now, thanks to the Stump on Sports All-Star Softball Classic, five of those six seniors will reunite to play together one more time.

    June 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Junior golf: Hicks able to hang for final round

    Despite giving up a few strokes from Monday’s opening round of 4-over-par 76, Dalton’s Landon Hicks was the only local competitor to advance to the third round of the Georgia Junior Championships.

    June 18, 2014

  • Isabel Salinas 5 mlh.jpg All-Area Spring Female Team: Salinas hoping things keep getting better and better with age

    Isabel Salinas’ freshman season for Southeast Whitfield High School’s track and field team wasn’t up to her standards, and she really isn’t sure why it ended up that way in 2013. It could have been her injuries. It could have been not being in proper shape.
    One thing Salinas, nicknamed “Izzy” by friends and coaches, does know is that her sophomore year went a lot better.

    June 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • North Murray-Newton2.jpg N. Murray second at Cam Newton

    Members of the North Murray High School football team and coaching staff pose with Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, standing center, after finishing second in the third annual Cam Newton Foundation 7 on 7 Football Tournament at North Cobb High School in Acworth. The Mountaineers will advance to face other regional tournamentwinners at the Charlotte (N.C.) Championship Tournament on July 10-12. Northwest Whitfield also competed in the tournament with linebacker Clay Phillips (not pictured) being selected as a Tournament All-Star.

    June 2, 2014 1 Photo

  • poty seth.jpg All-Area Baseball Team and Player of the Year

    As a freshman at Northwest Whitfield High School, Seth Pierce came out of nowhere and was as dominant a pitcher as the area had. Finishing his “rookie” season with the Bruins, the left-handed Pierce led the area with nine victories — he also had one save — and showed overpowering dominance with a 9-3 record and 89 strikeouts in 73 1/3 innings. He finished his first season on the hill in Tunnel Hill with a 1.71 ERA while allowing 61 hits and 23 walks. Those numbers were also recorded against competition in a higher classification as the Bruins were playing Class 4A ball when the state had just five classifications. His performance earned him honors as 2012 The Daily Citizen All-Area Baseball Player of the Year.

    May 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • daltongirls.JPG Dalton girls finish second in Class 4A

    In the Class 4A girls state golf tournament last year, the Dalton High School team finished third at Nob North Golf Course. Monday, playing in the state championship at Waynesboro Country Club, the Lady Catamounts finished second by just two strokes.
    “There is just one more place left to win,” Dalton coach Nancy Hallsworth said. “They have the time ahead of them to do it.”

    May 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • N. Murray cheer duo headed to DSC

    CHATSWORTH — For North Murray cheerleader Tori Stainton, earning a spot on Dalton State College’s competition squad is the fulfillment of a long process. Classmate Stacia Baker went for a tryout on a whim and found her own spot with the Roadrunners.

    May 9, 2014

  • Phillips signing at NM 3 mlh.jpg No shortage of highlights this year for Phillips

    CHATSWORTH — When Grace Phillips finished posing for photos of her signing a volleyball scholarship with Andrew College on Monday in North Murray High School’s library, a crowd of supporters gathered for the ceremony put their hands together.
    It wasn’t the first time she’d heard applause during a memorable and achievement-filled senior year.

    May 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • Good day sends Dalton boys to state golf tourney

    With a spot in the Class 4A state tournament on the line, Dalton High School’s golf team put together one of its best rounds this season on a course coach Hunter Johnston said was as demanding as any the Catamounts had played this year.

    May 6, 2014