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June 29, 2012

Deyton takes over as Jaguars’ head softball coach

Georgia Perimeter College athletic director Alfred Barney announced this week that he has named Ken Deyton as the Jaguars’ head softball coach.

Ken Deyton played a major role in the Jaguars’ winning ways of the past five years.

Deyton served for five years as assistant coach under Ed Schutte, who left Georgia Perimeter in April. Deyton was responsible for offense, defense, academics and recruiting, and he served as interim head coach for the last five games this spring.

“Ken is a perfect fit for the softball head coaching position at GPC,” Barney said. “He will continue the program’s winning tradition that he helped establish.”

During Deyton’s tenure as assistant coach, he and Schutte twice won the regular season championship of the NJCAA Region 17, also known as the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. The Jaguars won the region tournament in 2010, sending them to the national championship tournament in St. George, Utah, their second trip to nationals under Schutte.

In four of the past five seasons, the Jaguars won 30 or more games, part of a streak of seven seasons.

“GPC Softball has always had a winning tradition, and I plan to continue that success,” Deyton said. “Our philosophy is simple—develop solid students, prepare our student athletes to start at the four year level, get them there, and win a national championship.”

A resident of McDonough, Deyton graduated from Stockbridge High School, where he lettered in varsity football and baseball. He was an all-region selection in baseball in his junior and senior years.

Deyton’s coaching career began in 1986 with youth major baseball in Stockbridge and he headed up the Stockbridge Tiger travel football program through 1998.

He also was the main organizer of the Georgia Blitz Fastpitch Softball Organization and head coach of the Georgia Blitz Gold 18U team from 1998 through 2006. He won many Amateur Softball Association championships and made appearances to the ASA National Championship in 2004 and 2006.

Additionally, Deyton was a member of the Worth Sports Women’s International Softball Team coaching staff when the team was champion of the 2010 Puerto Rico Olympic Softball Festival in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Recently, Deyton earned his associate degree in sports and recreation management from Gwinnett Technical College.

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June 28, 2012

Smith named to NJCAA softball Academic All-America team

The National Junior College Athletic Association last week named Georgia Perimeter College sophomore outfielder Kaitlyn Smith to the softball Division 1 Academic All-America team.

Kaitlyn Smith

Smith, a health and physical education major from Buford, Ga. and North Gwinnett High, graduated from Georgia Perimeter in May with a 3.73 grade point average.

Although she received scholarship offers to play softball at four-year institutions, she chose to leave the game and focus on academics at in her junior and senior years.

“If I had to describe Kaitlyn it would take two words, ‘driven’ and ‘determined,’ in the classroom and on the field.” said GPC’s new head coach, Ken Deyton. He served as the Jaguars’ assistant coach for five years and was responsible for hitting and defense.

“It was never a secret that Kaitlyn would be successful—you could see it every day at practice in her work ethic,” he added.

In her freshman year, Smith made the NJCAA All-Region 17 second team with a .362 batting average. She served as co-captain with Kacie Patterson during her sophomore campaign and finished at GPC with a .294 career average at the plate and a fielding percentage of .920.

“She left as one of the all-time most talented outfielders in GPC history,” Deyton said. “It’s people like Kaitlyn that will make a difference in our society, and I can’t wait to see the differences she makes.”

The Jaguar softball program usually turns in excellent academic performances, but the 2011-12 accomplishments were outstanding. The team GPA was 3.21. Freshmen Samantha Maycock and Madison Case recorded 3.98 GPAs, and another freshman, Jessie Romines, posted a 3.45.

Sophomores Patterson and Lauren Bell graduated with 3.21 and 3.11 GPAs, respectively. Others at 3.0 or over were freshmen Rachel Martinez (3.13), Savannah Cook (3.03) and Stephanie Satterfield (3.00).

“As a team we took 75 classes this spring, and we had 47 A’s and 19 B’s,” Deyton said. “I’m proud of our work in the classroom.”

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May 19, 2012

Patterson leads Jags in region honors

Sophomore shortstop Kacie Patterson, who had an outstanding career at Georgia Perimeter College, recently was selected to the National Junior College Athletic Association All-Region 17 first team.

Rachel Martinez

Kacie Patterson

The coaches of the conference— also known as the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association— voted Patterson on the first team for the second straight year. She led the Jaguars in hitting and finished second in the league with a .475 batting average. Her career average for the Jags was .477 and her fielding percentage was .960.

“Kacie is hands down the most complete college athlete I have coached,” said interim head coach Ken Deyton. “During her two years at GPC, she raised the bar and expectations within our softball program.”

Two teammates, Rachel Martinez and Lauren Bell, were named to the all-region second team. Martinez, a speedy freshman outfielder, was the nation’s second-leading hitter with a phenomenal .568 average. She led the team in stolen bases and runs scored.

Martinez was sidelined for a long stretch by an injury, so several league coaches didn’t see her in action, which prevented the necessary votes for the first team.

“Coming in we knew Rachel would be special, but we didn’t know just how special,” Deyton said. “Our expectations are high for her sophomore year. She could possibly set offensive records.”

Stephanie Satterfield

Lauren Bell

Bell is a sophomore and workhorse who pitched in 39 games. She posted a 17-8 record and a 1.97 earned run average, striking out 106 and walking 49 in 156 innings.

“Lauren leaves behind at GPC a willingness and spirit that we will never let go of. She loves success and the work it takes to gain it,” Deyton said.

Bell, who also is a first baseman, and freshman pitcher-first baseman Stephanie Satterfield were named to the all-tournament team selected after the conference playoffs in Locust Grove. Satterfield led the team in doubles with 10 and tied Patterson in runs batted in with 27. Her .413 batting average ranked seventh in the conference.

“Stephanie gave us some great games in the circle before an elbow injury limited her pitching time later in the year,” Deyton said. “ However, she was our ‘go to’ offensively. When runners were in scoring position, we loved for her to have the bat in her hand.”

Georgia Perimeter fell short of 30 wins for the first time in eight seasons, finishing with a 26-16 record.

However, led by Martinez— who played in last fall’s Pan-Am games for Puerto Rico— the Jaguars ranked third in the nation with a .399 team batting average. Patterson’s .475 average ranked No. 21 in the NJCAA. Freshman infielder Madi Case joined in the above-400 club with a .414 average.

Patterson, who was team co-captain along with sophomore outfielder Kaitlyn Smith, will play for Armstrong Atlantic State University next year with an athletic scholarship. Bell earned a scholarship to play at Anderson University in South Carolina.

Other sophomores earning athletic scholarships are outfielder Marlee Morales and third baseman Heather Kilar. Both will play at Georgia Gwinnett College in the Grizzlies’ inaugural season. Smith, a health and physical education major, received athletic scholarship offers, but plans to focus on academics her junior and senior year.

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April 28, 2012

ABAC knocks out Jaguars in nine innings

For the first time in recent memory, Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College defeated Georgia Perimeter College, and the Fillies did it in dramatic fashion Saturday.

Brie Floyd, second from left, and teammates celebrate her home run that sent the game into extra innings. Photo/Cheryl Ledford Romines

ABAC scored three runs in the top of the ninth, the second extra inning, to win 5-2 and eliminate the Jaguars from the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association tournament in Locust Grove.

GPC finishes its season with a 26-16 record. Abraham Baldwin (19-26) advances to the final elimination game Sunday versus Darton College. The winner of that matchup advances to the afternoon championship round against Gordon College, survivor of the winners’ bracket.

ABAC is the sixth seed in the six-team double-elimination tournament. The Jaguars had beaten ABAC at least seven consecutive times going back to 2010, and most recently twice in Tifton in March.

“It was simply a game of missed opportunities,” said GPC coach Ken Deyton. “We had runners in scoring position numerous times but couldn’t capitalize.” The Jaguars pounded out 13 hits but left 10 runners on base.

Rachel Martinez, the league’s leading hitter, led off the bottom of the first inning for the Jaguars with a base hit. After she stole second base, Stephanie Satterfield singled her to third, and Martinez slid under the tag at the plate on a squeeze bunt by Kacie Patterson, who had three hits in the game.

ABAC’s Savannah Berkhiser hit a two-run home run in the top of the third inning to give the Fillies a 2-1 lead.

Brie Floyd, batting eighth, hit a solo home run over left-center fence in the fourth to again knot the score at 2-2.

The teams settled into a pitchers’ duel for four innings. Alex Payne went the distance for ABAC to get the win, and Lauren Bell (18-10) pitched the entire game for the Jaguars, striking out 11, but took the loss.

“Bell again did a tremendous job,” Deyton said. “But I left her in one inning too long.” GPC’s other pitcher, Stephanie Satterfield nursed a sore elbow throughout the tournament, and the coach used her sparingly in the circle.

Lauren Thrasher got a leadoff single in the top of the ninth and moved around to score the game-winner on a sacrifice and two wild pitches. Two walks later, Berkhiser singled in two more runs to ice the game.

Deyton was philosophical about the season-ending loss, and praised the Jaguar sophomores—Patterson, Bell, Kaitlyn Smith, Marlee Morales and Heather Kilar.

“This was a special bunch,” the coach said. “They are complete student athletes, both academically and athletically. They’ll be instant contributors to at the colleges they are transferring to, and we’ll miss them.”

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April 28, 2012

Jaguars turn tables on Waycross with 3-1 win in region tourney

Lauren Bell pitched a three-hitter and the Jaguar bats came through with key hits as Georgia Perimeter College defeated Waycross 3-1 Saturday morning to advance at the GCAA tournament in Locust Grove.

Rachel Martinez slides at second. Photos/Cheryl Ledford Romines

After Waycross tied the score 1-1 in the top of the sixth inning, Madi Case, Stephanie Satterfield, Kacie Patterson and Kaitlyn Smith produced two runs in the bottom of the inning for the victory.

“What’s the word? Perseverance—they continued to stay solid on defense and got quality at-bats,” said acting head coach Ken Deyton.

With one out, Case, Satterfield and Patterson each stroked solid base hits to fuel the sixth-inning rally. Kaitlyn Smith popped a bases-loaded fly to shallow outfield that was dropped, scoring Case and Satterfield. Bell (18-9) then sat the SwampFoxes down in order in the seventh for the win.

Georgia Perimeter (26-15) advanced in the losers’ bracket to Saturday’s 4 p.m. game with Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, winner of the noon game, 6-1 over East Georgia College. Waycross (26-18) and East Georgia (29-25) were eliminated and ended their seasons.

Waycross had handily swept the Jaguars 2-0 and 9-1 at GPC in their conference meeting on March 31.

Bell struck out three, walked one and pitched a no-hitter through the first four innings. It was welcome relief for the sophomore righthander who is headed for Anderson University next year—she struggled in Friday night’s 6-3 loss to Gordon College.

Kaitlyn Smith makes a big-league catch in the second inning.

“I told Lauren she went from the shop to the showroom,” Deyton said.

Deborah Caccavale broke up the no-hitter with a single down the right field line. She was left stranded, but the SwampFoxes scored in the sixth on a base hit by Katelyn Baxley and an RBI infield single by Aimee Johnson.

GPC took the early lead. Cheyenne Maske opened the bottom of the second with a base hit, and Smith followed with another single. After Heather Kilar bunted them over to second and third, Jessie Romines plated Maske with a groundout that turned into a double play when Smith attempted to take third on the shortstop’s throw to first base.

The Jaguar defense backed Bell up in every way. Center fielder Smith made a exceptional diving catch in left-center to rob Kylie Tierce of a base hit. Shortstop Patterson made a similar big league play on a hard grounder behind second base. Martinez scooped up a would-be single in right field and threw Caccavale out at first base.

The winner of the Georgia Perimeter-ABAC game will advance to Sunday’s final three round, playing Darton College at 10 a.m. Darton lost to Gordon College 4-3 Saturday afternoon. Gordon advanced to the championship round Sunday at 1 p.m., and if necessary at 3 p.m.

All games in the double-elimination tournament are being video broadcast online by veteran sportscaster Robert Williamson and Jockjive.com. To watch any game, find the link at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

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April 27, 2012

Gordon upends Jaguars 6-3 in tourney

The Jaguars Friday ran into the new kid on the block whose rapid ascent into the elite of the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association has raised eyebrows around the league.

The Jaguars came into the tourney seeded No. 2, and Gordon was No. 3. Photos/Cheryl Leford Romines

Georgia Perimeter College fell to Gordon College 6-3 at the GCAA tournament in Locust Grove, as the Highlanders demonstrated they no longer are an easy out in the GCAA.

No. 3 seed Gordon (34-16), which hasn’t made the six-team double elimination tournament in years, beat Abraham Baldwin College 5-4 in the first round Friday. Then Friday evening the Highlanders hit three home runs off of GPC starter Lauren Bell, while Gordon righthander Meagan Stover kept GPC’s lefty-heavy lineup mostly at bay.

“To sum it up, Gordon’s bats won the game,” said GPC’s acting head coach Ken Deyton. “We couldn’t get anything going on offense. Stover pitched her heart out—she threw the ball well.”

Stover (21-9) pitched a five-hitter and fanned six, while the Highlanders rapped eight against Bell (17-9) and one on Satterfield.

Kacie Patterson singled in the first inning but was stranded at third base as the Jaguar offense struggled.

Gordon’s Amanda Voyles hit two home runs and Karson King blasted another—a sizzling line drive that threatened damage to the stone wall beyond the chain link home run fence.

The Highlanders jumped off to a 2-0 lead in the first inning and went up 3-0 in the third on Voyles’ first home run.

GPC (25-15) rallied to tie it in the fourth and for a moment it seemed the old order would return to the league.

Kaitlyn Smith started it off with a base hit; Rachel Martinez reached on an infield hit; Stephanie Satterfield reached on an error and scored Smith; Martinez scored on a wild pitch; and Marlee Morales brought home Satterfield with a squeeze bunt.

In the fifth Karson’s solo rocket and a two-run blast by Voyles made it 6-3.

Satterfield relieved Bell and pitched 2 2/3 innings of scoreless ball.

The Jaguars get little rest, returning to Strong Rock Christian School, the tourney host, Saturday at 10 a.m. to meet Waycross in the losers bracket.

If the Jags win, they play again at 4 p.m. against the winner of the other losers bracket game, East Georgia College vs. Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College. East Georgia defeated Waycross 13-4 Friday and then lost to No. 1 seed and defending champion Darton College 7-6.

The GCAA tournament is held at Strong Rock Christian School, 4200 Strong Rock Parkway, Locust Grove, GA 30248.

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April 25, 2012

Jaguar Journal: No. 2-seeded Jaguars slated for region tournament at 7 p.m. Friday

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars are seeded second in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association tournament, which begins Friday in Locust Grove. Perhaps that second seed is a good omen.

Kacie Patterson

Rachel Martinez

Lauren Bell

The Jaguars were also seeded second in 2007 and 2010, when they won the event and made trips to the National Junior College Athletic Association tournament.

The GCAA’s six-team, double-elimination tournament will be at Strong Rock Christian School for the second consecutive year. By Sunday afternoon one team will be on its way to St. George, Utah, for the NJCAA nationals.

Last year that team was Darton College, and the Lady Cavaliers are seeded first this time after going 14-4 in the regular season. GPC and Gordon tied at 13-5, with the Jaguars snagging the No. 2 seed on a tiebreaker. Waycross was fourth at 12-6, followed by East Georgia and Abraham Baldwin at 8-10.

Nobody can remember the GCAA producing such a strong and balanced field, so nothing is certain.

“I think it’s a toss-up,” said Darton head coach David Dews. “The team that gets hot will win it.”

“There will be no ‘gimmes,’” said Georgia Perimeter acting head coach Ken Deyton. The top two seeds get a bye through the first round.

The first day schedule: 1 p.m. – Waycross vs. East Georgia (Waycross won both games during the regular season).

3 p.m. – Gordon vs. ABAC (Gordon won both games by 1-0 scores).

5 p.m. – Darton vs. the Waycross-East Georgia winner (Darton split its region doubleheader with each team).

7 p.m. – GPC vs. the Gordon-ABAC winner (The Jaguars swept ABAC, split with Gordon).

All games will be video webcast, with links available at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts” and at the GCAA website. The full tournament bracket is also available at the league website.

The Jaguars’ chances hinge on speed, timely hitting and a strong performance from pitcher Lauren Bell, who went 13 innings in the doubleheader against Darton last Saturday and seemed to get stronger as the day wore on. The righthander was 17-8 in the regular season with a 1.97 earned run average.

GPC’s big offensive weapon is speed at the top of the lineup, led by regular season batting champion Rachel Martinez (.568) and last year’s batting champ, Kacie Patterson (.475), now second in the league. Martinez’ average is ranked third in the nation.

Bell was outdueled by the Darton tandem of Jenny Willis and Katy Lewis Jordan in the doubleheader opener as the Lady Cavaliers won 3-2. The Jaguars won the nightcap 7-2.

Jordan got the first game victory in relief, giving her a 24-2 record with a league-leading 0.90 ERA and 253 strikeouts in 172 innings. Willis is second in the GCAA with an ERA of 1.47.

The Lady Cavaliers are ranked No. 16 nationally and carry a 42-5 record into the tournament. But they have lost to three teams in the tournament and also lost to Georgia Military, which lost out on a tiebreaker and didn’t make the field.

Darton’s strong pitching is supported by the top three RBI producers in the league—Jessica Vason (52), Erica Vasquez (50) and Chantelle Curinton (44). The Lady Cavaliers also have two of the top four hitters in Chelsea Showers (.474) and Kelsea Ogletree (.446).

In addition to Martinez and Patterson, the Jaguars counter at the plate with Madi Case, tied for sixth in the league at .414, and Stephanie Satterfield, seventh at .413. Satterfield supplies power, and the lefthander is 8-6 in the pitching circle with a 2.59 ERA.

GPC played a tougher nonregion schedule than Darton and enters the tournament 25-14. Should both teams win their openers, they meet in Saturday’s featured game at 2 p.m. An early loss would relegate either or both to the losers’ bracket, where the games start at 10 a.m. on Saturday.

JAGUAR JOLTS: The GCAA also serves as Region 17 of the NJCAA. … No team has won two consecutive Region 17 titles since Young Harris College did it in 2003-04. … Darton won the title and went to the nationals in two of the last three seasons, interrupted by GPC in 2010. … Veteran broadcaster Robert Williamson will supply the video play-by-play for Jockjive, a production company based in Florala, Alabama.

The GCAA tournament will be held at Strong Rock Christian School, 4200 Strong Rock Parkway, Locust Grove, GA 30248.

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April 20, 2012

Jaguars split with Darton; Cavaliers win top seed

A sweep of Friday’s rescheduled doubleheader at Darton College would have given the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars the regular-season title and top seed in next week’s tournament.

But despite a 13-inning yeoman performance by pitcher Lauren Bell and another solid team performance at the plate, the Jaguars settled for the No. 2 seed in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. They dropped the opener to Darton 3-2 and then snagged a 7-2 victory in the nightcap that turned out to be a vital win.

Because Waycross College lost a game Friday at South Georgia College, the Jaguars will finish in sole possession of second place, earning a bye in the first round of the six-team tournament next Friday at Strong Rock Christian School in Locust Grove.

Had Georgia Perimeter (25-14, 13-5) lost the second Darton game, they would have fallen into a second-place tie with Waycross, who would win the tiebreaker and get the No. 2 seed.

With Friday’s split, Darton (44-4, 15-3) comes away with first place in the standings and the top seed. Credit one Cavalier who has served as nemesis for GPC over two seasons—Katy Lewis Jordan.

With Darton leading 2-1 in the first game, Jordan relieved starter Jenny Willis in the fifth inning. Rachel Martinez immediately launched a fly to the warning track in the right-field corner. With two outs, Stephanie Satterfield singled and drove her home to tie the game.

But then Jordan sat down seven Jaguars in a row, including four strikeouts, giving the powerful Cavalier lineup time to work on Bell.

”Katy Jordan lived up to the hype,“ said GPC assistant coach Ken Deyton. ”She’s the real deal.“ Deyton filled in for head coach Ed Schutte, who couldn’t attend the game.

In the bottom of the fifth inning, Jordan got the run she needed to earn the win. Chelsea Showers doubled, and Jessica Vason got the RBI single that eventually won the regular-season title for the Cavaliers.

Darton took a 2-0 lead in the first inning on a two-run hit by Erica Vasquez. GPC broke into the run column in the fourth when Kacie Patterson stroked a hit, stole second base and scored on a double to the left-field gap by Savannah Cook.

Bell (17-8) seemed to get stronger and stronger in the second game, restricting the Cavaliers to six hits.

”I’m very proud of Lauren Bell,“ Deyton said. ”She pitched 13 strong innings, mixed her pitches and had good location.“

Darton head coach David Dews agreed that Bell ”got into a groove,“ and added, ”All three pitchers did a great job. They threw very well, and that’s typical of the past games between these two teams.“

Since 2010, the scores between GPC and Darton have been: GPC won 2-0; Darton, 11-1; GPC 4-3 (championship 2010); GPC, 2-0; Darton, 2-1; Darton, 2-1; Darton 2-1 (championship 2012); Darton, 3-2; GPC, 7-2.

But in the second contest the Jaguar hitters got to Willis, who nearly matched Bell with a total of 11 innings for the day.

Leading off the game, Patterson singled and grabbed two bases on a passed ball. Martinez, whose .560 average coming in led the league and was second in the nation, scored Patterson with an infield hit.

Patterson, four-for-six on the day, again started it off in the third, singling, advancing on a bunt and scoring on a hit by Satterfield.

In the fifth, Martinez again tripled and scored on a Satterfield groundout.

The floodgates opened in the seventh. Patterson led off with a walk; and singles by Martinez, Cook (RBI), Marlee Morales and Bell (2 RBIs) and an RBI sacrifice by Satterfield made it 7-1.

Darton scored in the bottom half of the inning on an RBI single by Chelsea Showers, who, on a throw home from center field, was thrown out at second by catcher Cheyenne Maske to end the game.

The Jaguars, ranked fifth in the nation in team batting coming into the day, collected 12 hits in the nightcap, notably three each by Martinez and Morales.

Next weekend’s GCAA tournament will be video-streamed live by Jock Jive. To watch those broadcasts, visit www.gpc.edu and find the links under ”Game Webcasts.“

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April 19, 2012

GPC-Darton softball rescheduled for Friday; baseball schedule sticks to original dates

Because of a threatening weekend weather forecast for the Albany area, the Georgia Perimeter College-Darton College softball doubleheader has been moved to Friday. The games were originally scheduled for Saturday.

Friday’s game times will be 2 and 4 p.m. The games will still be audio webcast, with links available at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

With a 12-4 record in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association, the Jaguars will take the field for Saturday’s season finale twin bill with a chance to finish in first place. Darton was 12-2 going into a doubleheader Thursday against Georgia Military College.

On the baseball side, after a schedule change, the coaches have decided to go with the original schedule for the final three games of the GPC-West Georgia Tech series. The teams are scheduled to play a single game Friday at 2 p.m., followed by a doubleheader Saturday at 1. The games will be played at the University of West Georgia.

The first game of the series is scheduled to be played tonight in Covington at 6 p.m. All four baseball games will be broadcast online at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

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April 14, 2012

Jaguars give Schutte big send-off on Sophomore Day with comeback win

In his final home doubleheader as coach at Georgia Perimeter College, the Jaguars gave Ed Schutte a victory like few of his other 331.

Down by four runs with one out in the seventh inning, the Jaguars improbably strung together six consecutive hits and a sacrifice fly to beat Emory University 6-5 Saturday in the first game on Sophomore Day. After an extended between-games program, Emory won the nightcap 6-2.

Schutte said he could remember only a handful of comebacks of such magnitude from his 11 seasons as coach. And this one came against a four-year program ranked No. 2 in NCAA Division 3.

“Hopefully we can take some of this momentum to Darton next weekend,” said Schutte. “We want to go there and play our game. If we get our short game going, then you never know what’s going to happen.”

The games Saturday in Albany will be at 4 and 6 p.m. Both will be audio webcast, with links available at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

Going into their final region doubleheader, the Jaguars are 12-4 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association and hope to claim the No. 2 seed for the tournament in Locust Grove on April 27-29. Darton is ranked No. 13 in the nation and has the inside track on the No. 1 seed, but the Lady Cavaliers lost twice this week, to East Georgia and Waycross.

Until the final seven hitters of the game, the opener was frustratingly familiar for the Jaguars—a shaky start and missed scoring opportunities.

Emory scored three runs in the first off Lauren Bell with two singles, two hit batsmen, two errors and a walk. Bell (16-7) hit her stride after snuffing a bases-loaded, one-out threat in the third. She retired 11 straight before yielding two more runs in the seventh on a double by Micah Scharff.

Down 5-1, the Jaguars (24-13) rallied with singles by Madi Case and Kacie Patterson, a two-run double by Stephanie Satterfield and singles by Cheyenne Maske, Kaitlyn Smith and Bell before Savannah Cook plated the final run with a walk-off sacrifice fly to left field.

“It was a game of momentum, and we got hot at the right time,” said Schutte.

The Jaguars finished with 14 hits, the final three off losing pitcher Amanda Kardys after Bridget Holloway started and went 6 1/3 innings. Bell and Maske had three hits apiece, while Rachel Martinez, Patterson and Satterfield had two apiece.

The second game also started badly for GPC, and this time things got no better. Five hits off Satterfield (8-6) and two errors led to four Emory runs in the first inning. Meaghan Schultz led the Eagles’ offense with three doubles.

Down by six, the Jaguars scored their two runs in the sixth. Patterson singled and scored on a double by Satterfield, who came home on a single by Smith.

Both runs were charged to winning pitcher Lena Brottman before Jamie Melson slammed the door, retiring six of the seven Jaguars she faced.

Marlee Morales had two of GPC’s eight hits.

Honored with signs, balloons, bouquets and ceremonies were the Jaguars’ five sophomores—Patterson, Bell, Smith, Morales and Heather Kilar. The Emory team joined the Jaguars in honoring Schutte after the game with a banquet catered by Shane's barbecue. Emory coach Penny Sequoiros, coaching legend Bob Heck and others gave speeches commemorating Schutte's successful career at GPC and many contributions to the game.

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April 12, 2012

Martinez, Case spark Jaguars to sweep at Georgia Military

The top of the lineup jump-started the Georgia Perimeter College offense Thursday, leading the Jaguars to a doubleheader sweep over Georgia Military College in Milledgeville. The scores were 8-0 and 7-4.

Madi Case

Rachel Martinez

“Rachel Martinez and Madi Case were 12-for-17 at the top of the batting order. Their control of the bat and speed dominated the game,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte.

The Jaguars raised their Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association record to 12-4 (23-12 overall) and kept alive their hopes of finishing second behind Darton, their opponent April 21 in the final region doubleheader. Those games will be in Albany.

But first the Jaguars go outside the region for their final home date of the season, playing Emory University of NCAA Division 3 in a doubleheader on Saturday at noon. It will be Sophomore Day and also Schutte’s final home date as coach.

All remaining regular season games will be audio webcast, with links available at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

Case had four hits in Thursday’s opener and drove in two runs. Stephanie Satterfield, Lauren Bell, Savannah Cook, Marlee Morales and Martinez had two hits apiece as the Jaguars amassed 14.

Bell pitched a three-hitter, striking out nine. She also got the Jaguars off to a good start with a two-run homer in the first inning and drove in a run during a four-run second.

GPC pounded out 15 hits in the nightcap, four by Martinez and two each by Case and Bell.

“We finally got the hitting going,” said Schutte.

The Jaguars took control early with four runs in the first inning as Satterfield pitched the complete game, striking out five.

Georgia Military, which is fighting for a spot in the six-team GCAA tournament, fell to 4-8 in the region and 17-25 overall. The tournament will be April 27-29 at Strong Rock Christian School in Locust Grove, Ga.

After Saturday’s doubleheader with the Emory varsity, Schutte will be honored with a farewell banquet in the field house by the GPC stadium, beginning at 5 p.m. The public is invited.

The Jaguars’ final home doubleheader, Sophomore Day and Ed Schutte farewell will be held at GPC’s Newton Campus, 239 Cedar Lane, Covington, Ga., 30014, near the intersection of I-20 and State Route 11.

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April 12, 2012

Alumni, fans to honor sophomores and Schutte at Saturday’s doubleheader and 5 p.m. banquet

Coming soon to a stadium near you—Sophomore Day and the Ed Schutte Farewell Banquet. Georgia Perimeter College Jaguar sophomores will be honored along with departing head coach Schutte at this Saturday’s softball doubleheader with Emory University’s varsity squad.

Ed Schutte

Kaitlyn Smith

Kacie Patterson

A sizable crowd is expected to attend the event at the Jaguars' stadium on the Georgia Perimeter Newton Campus.

After the opening game with Emory, which will begin at 12 p.m., the coaches and Jaguar freshmen will conduct a celebration for the sophomores. The second game should begin at approximately 2:15 p.m., and it will be the Jaguars' last home game this season.

There will be a banquet at 5 p.m. in the stadium field house to honor Schutte, who announced in February that he will leave Georgia Perimeter after the season is completed.

The sophomores to be honored will be co-captains Kacie Patterson and Kaitlyn Smith, along with Lauren Bell, Heather Kilar and Marlee Morales. The Jaguars—21-12, 10-4 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association—are fighting for second place, which brings a first-round bye in the conference double-elimination tournament April 27-29.

Schutte, who joined GPC as an assistant coach in 1997 and took over the head coach job in 2002, built the program into a regional and national contender. He plans to stay active in softball as a national-level coach, a clinic director and an instructor at McCann’s Windward Baseball and Softball Academy in Alpharetta.

During his 11-year tenure as GPC’s head coach, Schutte has posted a 329-167 record, and his teams have won 30 or more games for six straight seasons. He coached teams in several summer international tournaments featuring top-level college talent.

His Jaguars appeared in the National Junior College Athletic Association national tournament in 2007 and 2010 and won regular season titles in the conference in 2003, 2006, 2008 and 2009. He was GCAA Coach of the Year in 2003, 2006 and 2008 and co-coach in 2009.

The sophomore ceremony will feature tributes presented by the freshman players, and the banquet will include remarks by various speakers about Schutte’s accomplishments at the college.

The Jaguars’ final home doubleheader, Sophomore Day and Ed Schutte farewell will be held at GPC’s Newton Campus, 239 Cedar Lane, Covington, Ga., 30014, near the intersection of I-20 and State Route 11.

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April 3, 2012

Jaguars split with Gordon on the road

Lauren Bell pitched a three-hitter and Stephanie Satterfield had a hot bat Tuesday as the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars beat Gordon College 4-2 in eight innings in the second game of a doubleheader in Barnesville. The Jaguars lost the opener 6-5.

With the split the Jaguars are 21-12 and 10-4 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. Their next game is April 12 at Georgia Military College.

Satterfield stroked three hits, and Kacie Patterson had two as the Jaguars won the second game with three runs in the extra inning after regulation play ended tied at 1-1.

In the opener the Jaguars took a 5-0 lead in the first two innings but saw it evaporate. Bell also pitched that game.

Madi Case and Rachel Martinez returned to the lineup after injuries, and Martinez went 3-for-4. Kaitlyn Smith contributed two hits.

“It was good to get Martinez and Case back in the starting lineup. They set the table for us and it showed,” said head coach Ed Schutte.

The final home games of the season—and Schutte’s final home stand at Georgia Perimeter—will be April 14, a doubleheader against Emory University. The outing will feature Sophomore Day, with festivities for the Jaguar sophomores, and a cookout and ceremony for Schutte, who will leave GPC at the end of the season.

The Jaguars play home games at GPC’s Newton Campus, 239 Cedar Lane, Covington, Ga., 30014, near the intersection of I-20 and State Route 11.

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March 31, 2012

Jaguars squander chances in opener, lose doubleheader to Waycross

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars got good pitching and had chances to score in the opener of Saturday’s home doubleheader against Waycross College. When they didn’t cash in, losing 2-0, things went downhill.

The Jaguars lost the nightcap 9-1 in a game halted after six innings because of the run rule.

“Lauren pitched well enough to win,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte of his ace, Lauren Bell. “But you’ve got to score to win, don’t you?”

Bell (13-6) pitched a four-hitter, but one of those hits was a two-run homer in the fourth inning by Waycross’ Aimee Johnson.

In the meantime, the Jaguars’ frustration at the plate started early. They loaded the bases in the first inning with one out and failed to score. It was the same story in the seventh as Samantha Howard (8-3) polished off a six-hitter.

Kacie Patterson had two of the hits for the Jaguars (20-11, 9-3).

Johnson also led the way for Waycross (20-10, 7-1) in the second game, with three hits and two RBIs. Howard also had three hits, while Summer Rose drove in three runs. Mandy McClendon (6-2) went the distance for the pitching victory.

Stephanie Satterfield (9-5) kept the Jaguars within striking distance until the sixth inning, when Waycross pounded home five runs.

The lone GPC run of the day came in the fourth inning when Satterfield singled and was doubled home by Savannah Cook. But even that play ended badly: Cook was thrown out at third for the final out of the inning.

The Jaguars play Tuesday at Gordon, a doubleheader starting at 4 p.m. Their next—and final—home date is April 14 against Emory University, a doubleheader starting at noon. It will be Sophomore Day and the final appearance at Jaguar Field for Coach Schutte, who has announced he is leaving after the season.

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March 30, 2012

Bell wins both ends of doubleheader as Jaguars sweep South Georgia

Lauren Bell

When the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars needed Lauren Bell to pull extra duty in the pitching circle Friday, she was up to the task.

After beating South Georgia College 6-3 on a four-hitter, Bell returned in the second game, contributing 3 2/3 innings in relief of Stephanie Satterfield as the Jaguars completed the home doubleheader sweep with a 5-3 victory.

“We didn’t have our game today,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “We survived on Lauren Bell’s arm. We just weren’t ready to play mentally or physically.”

The Jaguars (20-9, 9-1) undoubtedly will need more game Saturday when they host Waycross, another team with just one loss in the region. The doubleheader starts at 4 p.m. and will be audio webcast, with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

Things went well early in the first game. Heather Kilar and Cheyenne Maske knocked in a couple of early runs, and Bell took a no-hitter to the fifth. But South Georgia rebounded with three runs, the final one scoring on a dropped fly ball with two out.

Stung, the Jaguars went back to work in the bottom of the inning, getting—in order—a double by Kaitlyn Smith, a triple by Kacie Patterson, a double by Maske, a triple by Satterfield and a sacrifice fly by Bell.The four runs finished off South Georgia (4-24, 0-2).

Cheyenne Maske

Of the Jaguars’ eight hits in the opener, seven were for extra bases. Smith had two doubles and Satterfield two triples.

The Jaguars scuffled in the second game as Satterfield had control problems. With one out in the fourth and GPC ahead 3-1, Schutte called on Bell with two on and a three-ball count on the batter. After completing the walk, Bell got a forceout at the plate and then needed a good defensive play to keep the lead.

A scratch single to shallow center field by Rebecca Rivers brought home South Georgia’s second run, but Smith preserved the lead by cutting down Emika Nomura trying to score from second base.

GPC went ahead 5-2 with two runs in the fourth. Sam Maycock started the inning with a double, followed by a single by Smith, a sacrifice, an RBI single by Maske and an RBI groundout by Satterfield.

Bell (13-5) closed out the game, but the Jaguars were never comfortable. They got a big spark in the seventh inning when second baseman Savannah Cook ranged into shallow right field to snare a popup

“She really went out there to get that,” said Schutte. “That was a big out, the first out of the inning.”

Maske, elevated to the No. 3 spot in the order as Schutte was forced to work around injuries, was the top hitter for the day, driving home three runs with three hits and a sacrifice fly. Satterfield and Smith also had three hits each.

Ashley Williams and Brooke Williams took the pitching losses for South Georgia.

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March 24, 2012

Jaguars get great pitching, but come up short at the plate in DH split

A day after getting all the hitting they needed, the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars came up dry at the plate Saturday in key situations as they wrapped up the two-day trip. The result was an unsatisfying doubleheader split with Middle Georgia in Cochran, by identical scores of 2-1.

Cheyenne Maske belted her second homer of the season.

In the opener, freshman catcher Cheyenne Maske gave the victorious Jaguars (18-9, 7-1) a two-run lead with a solo home run in the sixth inning. The run came in handy in the seventh when Lauren Bell (10-5) yielded a leadoff home run in the bottom of the inning before nailing down the final three outs.

The nightcap was more than frustrating. But when your early bases-loaded chance to break the game open goes up in smoke with a triple play, things often don’ t end well.

“A very disappointing loss,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “We should have won. It was our game to win.”

Things started going south in the third inning when a single by Sam Maycock, a walk and a hit batsman loaded the bases in a scoreless game. But when Kaitlyn Smith hit a sinking liner caught by center fielder Jenna Hanson, runners were caught off second and third.

The Jaguars broke through in the sixth when Smith’ s wind-blown pop-up went off the shortstop’ s glove for a scratch single. With two out, Bell slapped a double to corner, driving home the run.

Meanwhile, hard-luck losing pitcher Stephanie Satterfield (6-4) took a no-hitter into the sixth. Middle Georgia’ s Adele Harrison ended the bid with a one-out single after getting a second life at the plate when a foul pop-up was dropped. After moving to second on a groundout, Harrison scored on a single by Elliott Martin.

The Warriors (17-12, 1-1) won in walk-off fashion with two out in the seventh, on back-to-back doubles by Susanna Stokes and Whitney Smith. That gave them four hits off Satterfield, the same number Bell yielded in the opener.

“For these two days on the trip, those two pitched their hearts out,” said Schutte.

So did Middle Georgia’ s Mallory Riner, who got the victory by scattering five hits and striking out 10 Jaguar hitters.

The day started out promising for GPC. In the third inning of the opener, Marlee Morales singled and Rachel Martinez tried to sacrifice but wound up beating out the bunt. But it took a hit batsman and error to squeeze across a run.

In the sixth, Maske smacked a ball off the scoreboard beyond the right field fence for her second homer of the season, providing the eventual margin of victory.

The Jaguars next play at home Friday and Saturday against South Georgia and Waycross, respectively. Both doubleheaders start at 4 p.m. and will be audio webcast, with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

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March 23, 2012

Home runs by Cook in each game lead Jaguars to doubleheader sweep

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars found a missing piece of their game Friday—power hitting—in a doubleheader sweep over East Georgia in Swainsboro.

Freshman Savannah Cook showed power at the plate.

Savannah Cook led the way with a solo homer in each game as the Jaguars (17-8, 6-0) won the opener 9-0 in a game shortened to six innings by the run rule, then rallied in the nightcap for a 4-2 victory.

“We had a lot of long-ball power today. In addition to the homers, we must have hit six or seven balls to the warning track,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “If we get long-ball power, in addition to the speed we have up top in the lineup, we’re going to be tough to handle.”

The pitching was solid, too. Lauren Bell (9-5) had a two-hitter in the opener, Stephanie Satterfield (6-3) a four-hitter in the nightcap with seven strikeouts.

Cook gave the Jaguars a 1-0 lead in the opener with a leadoff homer in the second inning and also singled in the sixth when GPC polished off East Georgia with four runs.

Cheyenne Maske was 3-for-4 with a double and two singles and two RBIs.

There was more drama in the second game as the Jaguars rallied from a 2-0 deficit in the fifth on singles by Sam Maycock and Marlee Morales before Kaitlyn Smith smacked a two-run double.

Cook broke the tie with her homer in the sixth. She also had a double. Smith was 2-for-3.

The road trip continues Saturday with a doubleheader at Middle Georgia, starting at 2 p.m. The games will be audio webcast, with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

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March 16, 2012

Jaguars receive gift of two wins by forfeit

The Jaguars’ season opening loss in February most likely was the longest softball game ever played at Georgia Perimeter College. Friday’ s bizarre doubleheader victory no doubt was the shortest.

Catcher Samantha Maycock saw most of the action Friday, which abruptly turned into forfeits because of illegal bats used in the first inning.

The Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association twinbill had just begun with Andrew College late Friday noon when Andrew unfortunately was forced to forfeit both games because of an illegal bat and lack of an assistant coach.

With two outs in the top of the first inning, Andrew’ s Brittany Rodgers stepped to the plate and worked the count against GPC’ s freshman ace, Stephanie Satterfield. After fouling several off, Rodgers chipped the softball into short center field, apparently for the game’ s first base hit.

But from GPC’ s bench, sophomore pitcher/designated player Lauren Bell and head coach Ed Schutte had recognized that the bat Rogers used was an illegal bat.

After lengthy conversations with both coaches and cell phone calls to GCAA commissioner David Elder and an official with the National Junior College Athletic Association in Colorado, the umpires ruled that The Fighting Tigers must forfeit both games to GPC.

The NJCAA’ s rules state that when an illegal bat is used, the batter and coach must be ejected from the game and banned from the team’ s next two games. Another rule states that a team cannot compete without an employee from the college present.

Since Andrew coach Mark Brown had no assistant coach or any employee from the college making the trip from Cuthbert, the umpires awarded the double forfeit to the Jaguars.

The wins improve the Jaguars to 15-8 on the season, 4-0 in the GCAA. Andrew slips to 1-6, 0-2.

The exteriors of the composite bats used in college softball deteriorate with use, which gives the bat more power. So, the NJCAA periodically issues a list of bat models that no longer may be used.

“ It makes me more aware of how important it is to check your bats in the dugout and make sure you know the list,” Schutte said.

GPC’ s Feb. 10 opener lasted approximately five hours because the Jaguar stadium lights failed, and it took college personnel several hours to resolve the problem and get them all working again.

“ And it’ s all happened in my final season here,” smiled Schutte, who has announced he will leave Georgia Perimeter at the end of the season.

Next week the Jaguars take a road trip for two key league match-ups, a Friday doubleheader at East Georgia College and a Saturday twinbill at Middle Georgia College.

Saturday’ s games will be audio broadcast online, beginning at 1:50 p.m. Find the link at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “ Game Webcasts.”

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March 9, 2012

Jaguars drop two to Chipola

Very little went right for the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars on Friday in Marianna, Fla., as they lost a doubleheader to No. 7-ranked Chipola, a team that beat them by only a run early this season. This time the scores were 10-1 and 9-1.

The Jaguars (13-8) started the day with center fielder and leadoff hitter Rachel Martinez out of the lineup with an injury and got little service from right fielder Madi Case, who was injured during Thursday’s doubleheader victory at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College.

The makeshift defense appeared especially vulnerable in the second game as GPC committed four errors behind Stephanie Satterfield. Chipola (27-5) was ahead of Satterfield only 3-1 after five innings.

“They started playing the short game on us, and they have a lot of speed,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “They had eight hits for the game, and five of them were bunts. Stephanie pitched pretty well. We didn’t have our best defense out there.”

Lauren Bell started the opener and had control issues early as the Jaguars fell behind 4-0 in the first inning. She finished the game and allowed only five hits, but walked five and hit two batters while striking out six.

The Jaguars return to Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association play next Friday with a home doubleheader against Andrew College, starting at 4 p.m. on the Newton Campus. The games will be audio webcast, with a link available at www.gpc.edu/athletic under “Game Webcasts.”

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March 8, 2012

Jags start region play by beating ABAC twice

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars opened Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association play Thursday with a doubleheader sweep over Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton, 1-0 and 8-3.

Heather Kilar scored the game’s only run in the opener.

The Jaguars (13-6) had eight hits in the opener and then 17 in the nightcap, four by Kacie Patterson and three by Lauren Bell.

“Considering Rachel Martinez was out, we got a couple of good conference wins,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte, referring to his speedy center fielder, who is hitting .451. “Game one could have gone either way. We were lucky to win.”

Bell started the opener but had control issues and was relieved early by Stephanie Satterfield (5-2), who allowed just one hit and struck out three. Savannah Cook drove home Heather Kilar with the Jaguars’ lone run in the fourth inning.

Bell (8-4) came back to pitch a complete game eight-hitter, with one walk and three strikeouts.

Kaitlyn Smith, Madi Case, Cook and Cheyenne Maske had two hits apiece in addition to the production by Patterson and Bell. Smith hit in Martinez’s leadoff spot.

The Jaguars went ahead 5-0 after two innings and weren’t seriously threatened by ABAC (9-11).

The road trip on spring break week continues Friday with a doubleheader in Marianna, Fla., against No. 7-ranked Chipola.

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March 8, 2012

Patterson, Bell commit to four-year schools for 2013 season

The 2012 softball season is young, but already two members of the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars have solidified plans for next season.

Shortstop Kacie Patterson and pitcher/designated hitter Lauren Bell have committed to accept scholarships from NCAA schools — Patterson with Jacksonville State University in Alabama, Bell with Anderson University in Rock Hill, S.C.

Kacie Patterson

Lauren Bell

Patterson, a native of Rex, Ga., said she chose Jacksonville State, which plays in NCAA Division 1, because of an atmosphere that stresses teamwork over individuals. The coaching staff expressed interest in her when she played at Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy, something she found out after she decided to play her first two seasons at GPC.

She’s glad she did.

“Coming here made me so much better. Now I feel I’m ready to move up to the Division 1 level,” said Patterson, who made all-region during her freshman season and was the batting champion in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association.

“She’s a phenomenal shortstop, with great range, a great arm and a great attitude,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “She’s learned to put more power in her slapping now. She has really gotten stronger. I can see her going to Jacksonville State and being the starting shortstop.”

Bell will move into the starting rotation at Anderson, which plays in NCAA Division 2.

“It’s a small school, and I like that,” said Bell. “From the beginning they made me feel like I was at home.”

She said she’ll be sorry to leave GPC and that “if GPC had a four-year program, I’d definitely stay here.”

Bell won nine games as a freshman and will be the Jaguars’ workhorse this season both in the pitching circle and at the plate, where she will be counted on for run production in the middle of the lineup.

The Woodstock native won numerous honors at Sequoyah High School and drew the interest of four-year schools from as far away as Illinois. She said she chose GPC because of the opportunity to play immediately.

“If I went to a Division 1 school I knew I wouldn’t play. I didn’t want to sit for two years,” she said.

With the Jaguars, Bell has “really developed into an all-around pitcher,” said Schutte, who has worked with Bell for eight years, including as an instructor at a softball/baseball school.

“She’s learned to control her off-speed pitches and get strikes,” he said. “Her drop curve and screwball are unhittable at times. Also, she’s more of a mental pitcher. She has learned to pitch at the highest levels of junior college softball.”

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March 4, 2012

Satterfield pitches a no-hitter as Jaguars win twice more in Hanceville

The development of freshman lefthander Stephanie Satterfield continues to impress. On Sunday, she pitched a five-inning no-hitter against Alabama Southern, with only a walk denying her a perfect game.

Stephanie Satterfield

“She’s getting better. She’s learning how to pitch in college, keeping the ball down and getting movement. She’s feeling confident,” said Georgia Perimeter College coach Ed Schutte after the Jaguars won 8-0 at the Wallace JUCO Classic in Alabama in a game halted by the mercy rule. “It’s something we weren’t sure we were going to get.”

Satterfield raised her record to 4-2 and lowered her ERA to 0.68 while striking out two.

In Sunday’s other game, Lauren Bell (7-4) pitched a complete game in a 4-1 victory over Calhoun Community College of Alabama, allowing five hits and striking out four. She didn’t walk anybody.

The Jaguars (11-6), who won four of five at the JUCO Classic, open their Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association season Thursday in Tifton with a 3 p.m. doubleheader against Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College.

Sunday’s hitting star was Kacie Patterson, who drove in five runs in the two games while going 6-for-8.

Patterson had three hits and three RBIs against Alabama Southern. Madi Case and Sam Maycock had two hits apiece. The Jaguars rolled to the run-rule victory with three runs in the third inning, three more in the fourth and two in the fifth.

Patterson and Heather Kilar drove in two runs apiece against Calhoun. Kilar’s RBIs came on a double in the second inning after a single by Bell and an error. Patterson tripled home Savannah Cook and Bell in the fifth. Patterson and Bell were each 3-for-4

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March 3, 2012

Jaguars have a 2-1 day at Wallace JUCO Classic

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars reeled in two victories Saturday at the Wallace JUCO Classic in Alabama, but coach Ed Schutte was disappointed at the big one that got away.

Rachel Martinez turned in a good day in the batter's box.

The Jaguars (9-6) lost to the tournament host, No. 14-ranked Wallace State-Hanceville, 3-1 on a walk-off homer. They came back to beat Gadsden State 8-0 and Snead State 11-3 in a game ended after five innings because of the mercy rule.

“I’m disappointed we didn’t take care of Hanceville,” said Schutte. “We’ve got to learn to beat the big teams to get this team to the national level.”

Hanceville’s walk-off homer by Kirsten Gibson came in the seventh inning after an error, spoiling a two-hitter by Lauren Bell. She struck out four and walked three.

Rachel Martinez was 2-for-3 for GPC, and Stephanie Satterfield drove home the run. Satterfield moved to the circle for the next two games, shutting down Gadsden State on four hits and Snead State on two.

“I was pleased with the way Stephanie pitched 12 innings and allowed very few hits,” said Schutte.

Martinez, Kaitlyn Smith and Heather Kilar had two hits apiece for the Jaguars, who put Gadsden State away with a five-run fifth. Jessie Romines had two RBIs.

The Jaguars scored six runs off Snead State in the second inning. Madi Case, hitting leadoff in place of Martinez, had two hits, as did Smith. Kilar contributed a home run.

The JUCO Classic was shortened from three days to two because of wind and rain. Bracket play was canceled. The Jaguars finish up Sunday with two early games, against Calhoun and Alabama Southern.

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February 26, 2012

Jaguars bounce back to win twice on final day of Gulf Coast Beach Classic

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars got two-hit shutouts from Lauren Bell and Stephanie Satterfield on Sunday as they rebounded on the final day of the Gulf Coast Beach Classic in Panama City, Fla.

Stephanie Satterfield had a good day in the circle and at the plate.

Bell pitched the Jaguars (7-5) to a 2-0 victory over 20th-ranked Lake Land College of Mattoon, Ill. Satterfield followed with her first collegiate victory, 10-0 over Gadsden State of Alabama.

“I thought we rebounded very well,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “The hitters were more disciplined, and Lauren and Stephanie did a good job all weekend.”

The Jaguars, blanked in two games Saturday while getting only four hits, felt better when they scored in the first inning of the opener against Lake Land on an error. The other run came in the fourth after a hit by Kaitlyn Smith. Satterfield eventually drove in the run on a single up the middle.

GPC produced only four hits, but Bell didn’t need much help. She struck out three and walked one in the complete game.

The bats broke loose in the second game for nine hits, including three by Kacie Patterson and two by Heather Kilar. Satterfield drove home two of the runs, while Smith, Bell and Kilar had one RBI apiece. The remainder of the runs scored on miscues by Gadsden State.

Satterfield struck out six and walked two in her milestone win, and the offensive outburst helped save the weekend.

“Nobody blew us out,” said Schutte, whose team was 2-3 in the event. “We want to take this momentum into next weekend.”

That would be at the Wallace JUCO Invitational in Hanceville, Ala. The Jaguars open Friday morning against Gadsden State, then face Cleveland State of Tennessee. Things get tougher later in the afternoon when they play host Wallace State-Hanceville, ranked 11th in the preseason NJCAA poll.

The Lady Lions won the national championship in 2008 and were runners-up in 2009 and 2010.

“We want to get off to a good start, and if we do I think we have a chance against Wallace State-Hanceville,” said Schutte.

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February 25, 2012

Jaguars suffer two shutout losses at Gulf Coast Beach Classic

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars got some pitching Saturday, but a rough day at the plate doomed them to a pair of losses at the Gulf Coast Beach Classic in Panama City, Fla.

The Jaguars (5-5) produced three hits in a 3-0 loss to host Gulf Coast and only a single hit in a 4-0 loss to No. 11-ranked Chattanooga State. Shortstop Kacie Patterson, last season’s batting champion in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association, got two of the four hits.

A bright spot in the loss to Gulf Coast was the first collegiate complete game by freshman lefthander Stephanie Satterfield, who pitched a four-hitter. The game was scoreless into the fifth, when a walk and an error helped Gulf Coast score its three runs.

Sophomore righthander Lauren Bell also pitched a four-hitter against Chattanooga State after some jitters in the first inning. Two walks and a hit batsman helped Chattanooga State take a three-run lead.

Dominated at the plate, the Jaguars couldn’t catch up.

“We probably saw three of the best junior college pitchers in the country today,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “Lauren competed with them all the way.”

Bell’s game was similar to her late Friday night outing against No. 7-ranked Chipola, when walks and miscues in the field led to three runs allowed in the first inning and the Jaguars wound up losing 3-2.

Patterson drove in both runs, and leadoff hitter Rachel Martinez was 2-for-4, raising her batting average to .548, tied for 18th in the nation.

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February 23, 2012

Jaguars ready to take on a tough field at Gulf Coast Classic

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars won all five of their games at the Ringor Tournament in Aiken, S.C. Impressive, but the stakes will be higher and the field stronger this weekend at the Gulf Coast Beach Classic in Panama City, Fla.

“This will separate the girls from the women,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “It’s going to be a war.”

The Jaguars (5-2) would like to win enough early to merit a national ranking in the NJCAA poll, with an eye toward getting a better seed should they advance to the national tournament. This is a weekend to improve the resume.

GPC’s first game is Friday at 7 p.m. against No. 7-ranked Chipola College of Florida. On Saturday, the Jaguars play a double dip, against host Gulf Coast at 11 a.m. and No. 11 Chattanooga State of Tennessee at 1 p.m.

On Sunday, they meet Lake Land College at noon and Gadsden State of Alabama at 2. Never heard of Lake Land? It’s in Mattoon, Ill., and ranked No. 20 in the preseason.

Schutte pointed out that Chipola is 18-1 and second in the nation in hitting with a .448 average. The Jaguars are fourth at .446, with Chattanooga State (15-1) ranked 12th at .371.

“It’s going to be what pitcher is on,” he said.

Some of the nation’s leading strikeout artists will be in Panama City, and the Jaguars will counter with righthander Lauren Bell, the winning pitcher in all five games at the Ringor last weekend. Schutte said he plans to use Bell about 70 percent of the time this weekend, mixing and matching with lefthander Stephanie Satterfield according to the situation.

But how the Jaguars fare could come down to the bats. “We need some timely hits,” said Schutte.

The Jaguars depend on Bell and Satterfield at the plate as well as in the circle, but the most productive hitters in the lineup have been shortstop Kacie Patterson, center fielder Rachel Martinez and catcher Cheyenne Maske.

Patterson (.462, 1 HR, 6 RBIs) was last season’s batting champion in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association.

Hitting leadoff, Martinez is at .481 and leads the team in runs scored with 8. Maske, who usually catches when Bell is in the game, is at .400 with a homer and 3 RBIs.

The Jaguars start GCAA play March 8 at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College.

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February 18, 2012

Bell pitches Jaguars to 3 wins at Ringor Tournament

The Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars completed a five-game sweep at the Ringor Tournament in Aiken, S.C., on Saturday by beating three opponents by a combined score of 21-1.

Lauren Bell, shown in the season opener.

The Jaguars (5-2) beat Florence-Darlington Technical College 8-1, USC-Lancaster 8-0 and USC-Sumter 5-0. Lauren Bell had the pitching victory in each game.

“We looked a little better,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte.

Kaitlyn Smith had three hits, Brie Floyd two and Cheyenne Maske a home run in the opener. Bell only allowed two hits, one a home run.

Bell shared the pitching duties against USC-Lancaster with Stephanie Satterfield in a game that was halted in the fifth inning by the mercy rule. Satterfield had a home run, and Maske and Heather Kilar had two hits apiece.

Bell came back in the final game to strike out 10 USC-Sumter hitters, allowing only a hit in the seventh inning. She was also 3-for-4 at the plate. Rachel Martinez had two hits.

The Jaguars have early tournament action again next Friday through Sunday at the Gulf Coast Classic in Panama City, Fla. They don’t play at home again until March 16, against Andrew College.

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February 17, 2012

Jaguars win twice on opening day of Ringor

Lauren Bell came through both in the circle and at the plate Friday as the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars won twice on opening day of the Ringor Tournament in Aiken, S.C.

In the opener, Bell pitched a two-hitter as the Jaguars beat USC-Aiken 4-0. In the nightcap, she relieved in the sixth inning and drove home the winning run in the seventh of a 4-3 victory over Chattahoochee Valley Community College of Phenix City, Ala.

The Jaguars (2-2) have three more games scheduled Saturday, against Florence-Darlington Technical College at noon, USC-Lancaster at 2 and USC-Sumter at 6.

Kacie Patterson was 4-for-4 and Madi Case 3-for-4 against USC-Aiken as the Jaguars had 11 hits. Kaitlyn Smith, Stephanie Satterfield, Bell and Rachel Martinez had RBIs.

In the circle, Bell struck out three and walked four.

Rachel Martinez was 3-for-4 and scored three of the Jaguars’ four runs in the second game, with the other coming on a home run by Cheyenne Maske. Satterfield contributed two hits.

Patterson drove home Martinez with a single in the third inning, Maske homered in the fourth and Bell plated Martinez in the fifth with a sacrifice fly.

In the seventh, Martinez singled and eventually scored the winning run on a single by Bell, who pitched spotless ball in relief of Satterfield.

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February 10, 2012

Walters State sweeps Jaguars in season-opening doubleheader

As the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars basked in the light of overcoming a five-run deficit, they were plunged into darkness. Literally.

Jaguar Field sparkled as always on opening day, but committed its first-ever error—the lights went out.

With the Jaguars and Walters State Community College tied after seven innings, the lights malfunctioned at Jaguar Field on the Newton Campus. An hour and 15 minutes later, the game was resumed.

“Both teams lost their momentum,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “I knew it would take a break to win it, and they got it.”

In this case, a walk, an error and a wild pitch gave Walters State a 7-6 victory in eight innings.

The Senators completed a doubleheader sweep with a 2-0 victory in the nightcap as the Jaguars continued to fritter away opportunities at the plate.

“You can’t do that and beat good teams,” said Schutte, who acknowledges that the double-dip loss makes next weekend’s Ringor Tournament in Aiken, S.C., that much more important.

Stephanie Satterfield greets Jessie Romines at the plate during the sixth-inning rally of the first game.

Walters State, 40-13 last season, jumped ahead of the Jaguars 5-0 in the opener as Samaria Curtis and Randi Wimpy homered off Lauren Bell. In the fifth inning, Schutte brought in freshman pitcher Stephanie Satterfield for her collegiate debut. Two walks and a double left the Jaguars down by five.

They started their comeback with two runs in the bottom of the inning. After 2011 region batting champion Kacie Patterson drove home a run, Satterfield knocked home another with a sacrifice fly.

“She showed me she wants to play,” said Schutte of Satterfield, who also played some first base in the nightcap.

Satterfield also played a key role in the sixth as GPC surged into a 6-5 lead. After singles by Jessie Romines and Rachel Martinez and a walk, Patterson singled home a run. Satterfield followed with another single, pulling the Jaguars within 5-4 and chasing Walters State starter Kelsey Weddle.

Lauren Bell, winding up in the opener, pitched six solid innings in the second game against a strong lineup from Walters State.

Walters State coach Larry Sauceman turned to his ace, Ashley Rhyne, a 22-game winner in 2011. She promptly walked Savannah Cook and Kaitlyn Smith, putting the Jaguars ahead. Amazingly, the whole rally happened with two out.

Needing three outs to wrap up the victory, Satterfield yielded a leadoff homer in the top of the seventh to Lindsey Loudermilk, tying the score at 6.

GPC put runners at first and third with two out before Patterson flied out to left, ending regulation play. When the lights came back up for the second act, the theme of missed opportunities carried over.

Facing Rhyne again in the second game, the Jaguars got eight hits and two walks but failed to score. They loaded the bases in the fourth with one out. They even got a chance in the bottom of the seventh when infield singles by Martinez and Madi Case, plus a throwing error, put the tying runs in scoring position with two out.

Patterson grounded to second, leaving her with three hits for the day. Martinez and Romines had four apiece, while Cheyenne Maske also had three.

In the pitching department, Bell came back to pitch a complete game after her rough opener.

“She had some good moments and bad moments,” said Schutte. “In the second game, she had six very good innings before she got tired in the seventh.”

For Walters State, Curtis had five hits, Loudermilk four. In the circle, Rhyne won both ends of the doubleheader, sending the Senators back to Morristown, Tenn., happy and with an extra half-day off. Saturday’s playing date was canceled because of the forecast of extra-cold weather.

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February 10, 2012

Friday changed to doubleheader; Saturday’s games cancelled

Because of weather forecasts for freezing temperatures this weekend, Friday’s GPC softball opener with Walters State Community College has been changed to a doubleheader, and Saturday’s two games have been cancelled.

Friday’s doubleheader will begin at approximately 3:45 p.m. The audio online broadcast of the doubleheader will begin at 3:40, with a link under “Game Webcasts” at www.gpc.edu/athletic.

The Jaguars play home games at GPC’s Newton Campus, 239 Cedar Lane, Covington, Ga., 30014, near the intersection of I-20 and State Route 11.

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February 9, 2012

Schutte to leave GPC, but not softball, at conclusion of 2012 season

Ed Schutte, who helped usher Georgia Perimeter College softball into the fastpitch era and built the program to national prominence, has announced the 2012 season will be his last at the school.

Jaguar head coach Ed Schutte

But forget the term “retirement.” He plans to stay active in the game by continuing to teach at McCann’s Windward Baseball and Softball Academy in Alpharetta, doing clinics and perhaps coaching national teams.

“I’d like to pursue my course of coaching NCAA Division 1 All-Americans at the national level,” said Schutte, who has coached teams in several international events while at GPC.

Schutte arrived at GPC as an assistant coach to Dr. Bonnie J. Young as the Jaguars moved from slowpitch to fastpitch. He spent four seasons as an assistant before becoming head coach for the 2002 season.

“It’s definitely been a transition period,” Schutte said. “We moved from the Dunwoody Campus to the Newton Campus, and we went from mediocre facilities to first class.”

Along the way, he was able to recruit better athletes. Schutte enters his 11th season as head coach with a record of 308-155 and two appearances in the national tournament, 2007 and 2010. Four other teams won regular season titles in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association. He was named GCAA Coach of the Year in 2003, 2006 and 2008 and shared the award in 2009.

Schutte said his No. 1 memory at GPC is the 2007 team going to the nationals in Plant City, Fla., with 11 players.

“People were laughing at us because of our numbers. They were wondering where our program came from,” he said.

In their opener, the Jaguars upended No. 6-ranked Northeastern Oklahoma 6-4 with five runs in the seventh inning, including a two-run homer by catcher Shelley Jenkins. They beat Louisburg before finishing fifth.

But that team was noteworthy before it arrived in Plant City. After losing to Darton in the opener of the GCAA tournament, the players told Schutte not to worry, that they’d win five straight. They did, beating Middle Georgia twice on Sunday by a combined score of 19-4, befitting a team that hit .486. That still stands as the national record.

“That team was something special,” he said.

More special memories: The 2010 team beating Darton in the GCAA final on a slug bunt by pitcher Christina Ezell, and Ezell dominating an event at Wallace State-Hanceville, striking out 50 batters in 30 innings one weekend, including 13 in a shutout of heavy-hitting Chattanooga State.

Respected as one of the best pitching coaches at the collegiate level, Schutte produced a line of outstanding pitchers starting with Liz Hyman in 2003 and 2004. “Liz kind of put us on the map,” he said.

The run continued with Andrea Moss, Kimberly Hobbs, Ezell (662 career strikeouts, two-time GCAA Player of the Year, second team All-American) and now Lauren Bell, a sophomore in 2012.

Hyman, Moss and Hobbs went on to big careers at four-year schools — at Georgia State, North Georgia and Charleston Southern, respectively. They are among the 50 or so Schutte-coached players to advance to the four-year level.

Among position players, Schutte’s best may have been Kelly White, all-region in 2006 and 2007. “She was a phenomenal shortstop, the best infielder I ever coached, and a huge asset to the program,” he said.

But a current Jaguar has a chance to match those achievements. Slick-fielding Kacie Patterson was all-region in 2011 as well as GCAA batting champion.

But this latest group will be the last of the 190 or so players coached by Schutte. All will be invited back to GPC on April 14, when the Jaguars play Emory University, for a banquet honoring their coach.

Schutte now plans to spend more time with his family. “I’ve done my job,” he said. “I’ve done everything but win a national championship. Will I miss it? Sure. When the opener comes next February, I’ll miss it because I won’t be a part of it.”

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January 20, 2012

Jaguars work with Olympic legend Jennie Finch at her softball camp

The 2012 GPC Jaguars and coaches pose with retired Olympic softball star Jennie Finch, second from right, at her softball camp in Alpharetta.

The 2012 Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars were in Alpharetta in the off-season to help pitcher Jennie Finch conduct her Olympic Softball Camp.

“The team spent a valuable weekend helping out at the camp,” said head coach Ed Schutte. “We spent two full days with Jennie teaching young players the skills of softball.”

Finch led the U.S. team to a gold medal in the 2004 Games and a silver medal in 2008 before retiring in 2010.

In appreciation, Finch sent the Jaguar team a check for more than $1,000, which went to the program.

The Jaguars, who have cracked the 30-win mark for seven straight seasons, will shoot for their third trip to the national tournament this spring. They made it in 2007 and 2010.

The opener is scheduled for Friday, February 10, at 4 p.m. against Walters State Community College of Morristown, Tenn. The teams will play a doubleheader the next day, beginning at 12 noon.

The Jaguars play home games at GPC’s Newton Campus, 239 Cedar Lane, Covington, Ga., 30014, near the intersection of I-20 and State Route 11.

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January 19, 2012

Coaches association honors Schutte

Kaitlin Cochran presents an NFCA award to Ed Schutte for 300 wins as a college coach.

The National Fastpitch Coaches Association honored Georgia Perimeter College coach Ed Schutte at its December convention in Las Vegas with a plaque commemorating his 300th victory at Georgia Perimeter College.

The presentation, sponsored by Easton, was made by Kaitlin Cochran, an outfielder from Arizona State who is a veteran of U.S. teams that compete internationally. Schutte, who also has extensive international experience, coached Cochran in the Canada Cup competition in 2006.

Approximately 1,500 coaches attended the awards ceremony.

He obtained his 300th victory on April 1 last year in a 13-0 win over East Georgia College. Lauren Bell, who returns to the pitching circle this year, threw a no-hitter, and the team presented the game ball to Schutte afterward.

Schutte’s teams have won 30 or more games for seven consecutive seasons. He takes a career record of 308-155 into his 11th season at GPC. The opener is scheduled for Feb. 10.

The Jaguars play home games at GPC’s Newton Campus, 239 Cedar Lane, Covington, Ga., 30014, near the intersection of I-20 and State Route 11.

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January 12, 2012

Jaguars solid in speed, defense; bats, arms are key to 2012

The 2012 Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars figure to take their traditional place at or near the top of the standings. Exactly where they finish will hinge on pitching and power hitting.

Kacie Patterson led Region 17 in hitting in 2011.

Oddly, they will depend on the same two players for both.

With speedy and established table-setters at the top of the lineup, including all-region shortstop Kacie Patterson, coach Ed Schutte will send up Stephanie Satterfield and Lauren Bell to drive them home.

“We definitely need their power,” said Schutte, who is entering his 11th season.

Then there’s the pitching, the crux of any discussion about women’s softball.

Bell made a solid debut in 2011 as the second starter, finishing 9-5 with a 2.11 ERA. She didn’t yield an earned run to a Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association opponent.

“Lauren has gotten stronger and worked hard. Her speed is up, her movement is up, and she had a phenomenal change-up in the fall,” said Schutte. “I could see her winning 24 or 25 ballgames.”

She will win some with her bat. Last year Bell hit .431 and had 23 runs batted in, third on the team.

Lauren Bell gave up no earned runs in region games last year.

Satterfield, a freshman, was state 3A Player of the Year in the fall of 2010 at White County High School in Cleveland, Ga., as the Lady Warriors won the state championship. At one point she held the state record for homers in a season with 16 and, of course, was the star pitcher.

“A lot of this year’s success will hinge on how many innings we get out of Stephanie. She has to be able to back up Lauren,” said Schutte of the lefthander.

The Jaguars have speed to burn at the top of the lineup, starting with freshman center fielder Rachel Martinez from Woodland High School. She arrives more experienced than most, having played for Puerto Rico’s national team in the Pan American Games.

“She’s an incredible slapper,” said Schutte. “She may get on about 60 percent of the time.”

Next comes another freshman, outfielder Madison Case from Ola High School. “A great bunter and she can flat-out run,” said Schutte.

Patterson, who batted .475 and tied for the team lead with 25 RBIs hitting mostly in the second spot in the lineup, moves to the important number three slot. Her batting average led the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association (Region 17 of the National Junior College Athletic Association).

Right fielder Kaitlyn Smith was named second team all-region.

“She’s gotten a lot stronger,” said Schutte. “She’s more of a power slapper now.”

Further down the order, the Jaguars have Kaitlyn Smith, a second team all-region selection a year ago when she hit .362 and was second on the team in runs scored.

On defense, few are better than Patterson, who arrived from Eagles Landing Christian Academy last year with great range, soft hands and a strong arm. She’s flanked by two other defensive stalwarts, sophomore Heather Kilar at third base and freshman Savannah Cook (Ola High School) at second, important because Bell throws a lot of ground balls.

Martinez, Case and Smith won’t miss many in the outfield, and freshman Cheyenne Maske (Chapel Hill High School) has stepped in at catcher.

“We’re as rock solid on defense as we’ve ever been,” said Schutte.

Lineup changes are always possible depending on production at the plate, but the only position unsettled is first base, where the top candidate is Jessie Romines from Strong Rock Christian School. She plays multiple positions and can also pitch. Another candidate is Brie Floyd of Watkinsville (Prince Avenue Christian School).

Off the bench, returnee Marlee Morales will be the second catcher, likely handling Satterfield’s starts. She played in the outfield last season.

The Jaguars also have freshman infielders Kelcey Richter (Union Grove High School) and Sam Maycock (Ola High School) providing valuable depth.

The schedule is the usual collection of the toughest opponents Schutte could find, starting with the opening weekend at home against Walters State of Tennessee on Feb. 10-11. After that, the Jaguars play national-quality opponents tournaments in Aiken, S.C., Panama City, Fla., and Hanceville, Ala.

The Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association schedule starts March 8 in Tifton against Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, expected to be vastly improved this year.

Of course, the team to beat is defending champion Darton College, which defeated the Jaguars twice in last season’s tournament, both times by 2-1 scores, after finishing first in the regular season. The Jaguars were second in the region at 17-3 and went on to finish 30-13 overall.

GPC has put together seven straight 30-win seasons under Schutte, advancing to the national tournament in 2007 and 2010.

JAGUAR JOLTS: Two Jaguar sophomores have signed to move up to four-year colleges in 2013. Patterson is headed to Jacksonville State, Smith to Troy State. Bell and Kilar are discussing scholarship terms with four-year schools. … The GCAA will operate with nine teams this season, Coastal Georgia having moved to four-year status. That means 18 region games, but because of quirks in the year-to-year scheduling the Jaguars only have six at home. … The region tournament will be at Strong Rock Christian School for the second consecutive year, April 27-29.

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October 30, 2011

Jaguars’ Rachel Martinez plays for Puerto Rican national team in Pan Am Games

Rachel Martinez, projected as the Georgia Perimeter College Jaguars’ center fielder and leadoff hitter next spring, recently traveled to Guadalajara, Mexico to play for Puerto Rico’s national team in the Pan American Games.

Rachel Martinez, front row, second from the left, poses with the Puerto Rico national team before the Pan Am Games in Mexico.

With softball no longer an Olympic sport, the Pan Am competition is the most prestigious softball event in the world.

“It’s a tremendous opportunity and one that not many young players get, especially one from a two-year school,” said GPC coach Ed Schutte. “Almost all of these players are Division 1 All-Americans.”

Martinez, 18, said her father was born in Puerto Rico, thus making her eligible for the national team. She attended a tryout camp in Florida in February.

Puerto Rico won two games and lost five in the week of competition. The United States, the overall gold medal winner, won its sixth-straight softball gold medal at the Games with a 9-0 record.

Playing left and right field and pinch hitting and appearing in all seven of Puerto Rico’s games, Martinez batted .267 with four hits, including a double, in 15 trips to the plate. She drove in a run, scored two runs, stole two bases, struck out three times and committed one error.

Martinez was a two-time first team all-region selection at Woodland High School in Stockbridge. She was also the region Defensive Player of the Year in 2009. She has impressed Schutte and his staff during her appearances in fall scrimmage games.

“She has tremendous instincts to the ball and tremendous speed,” Schutte said. “She gets to every ball out there.”

At the plate, “she’s able to place the ball wherever she wants it,” the coach said.

Georgia Perimeter begins its 2012 season in February and will compete in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association, also known as Region 17 of the National Junior College Athletic Association.

Last year the Jaguars finished in second place in the region, and in 2010 they won the championship and went to the national tournament for the second time in four years.

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