Navarre softball team under direction of new coach

Navarre’s softball team is under new leadership. Kelly Hayes, a former Raider, is the new head coach and was pleased with how things played out the first time the team took the field in a game.

The Raiders crushed Fort Walton Beach 14-3 in five innings in a preseason game Wednesday.

“For a first outing, it was pretty good,” said Hayes, who graduated from Navarre in 2011. “We still have a lot of things to work on, but it’s a great way to start the preseason. I’m happy with the effort.”

The Raiders were playing without several of its top returnees, including Callan Taylor, Hannah Stapleton and Jordyn York as they are still competing in winter sports.

“Those players will definitely be a big factor for us, but right now, we are doing well with what we have. Our players are all working hard.”

The Raiders won 10 games last season, playing well down the stretch, but Hayes is hoping to see the team take bigger steps forward this year.

“One of the big keys to success is having the right mentality in the batter’s box,” Hayes said. “We just have to go in there relaxed and hit the ball. I want us to bring a lot of energy to the field, too.”

Read more in the Feb. 4 edition of Navarre Press or subscribe online here.

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