NEVER SATISFIED: King makes third appearance in NCAA Regionals, anxious to progress deeper into the postseason | Sports News

BRISTOL, Tenn. – King College softball has not arrive this considerably to cease now.

Two trophies sit prominently in King softball coach Jake Cockerham’s business. There is place for additional.

“I think they are a team that just wants to gain every single time they get on the discipline. If there is a trophy to be handed out, I feel they want it,” mentioned Cockerham, whose Tornado additional the Convention Carolinas match championship to its typical season title all through very last week’s tourney in South Carolina. “I assume that is just their mentality. If there is a thing at stake they are going to contend.”

Up next is the NCAA Division II Southeast Regionals, the third time in application record that the Tornado has attained this stage. King went 2-2 in 2018 and -2 in 2012.

“We have reported we did not arrive this much to only occur this considerably and we want to preserve going. If we have designed it to this place, why not maintain seeking,” he mentioned. “That is variety of our mentality. We expected to be right here. I do not imagine we have surprised ourselves, since the commencing of the 12 months, we predicted to be below with almost certainly the even bigger intention is to go further than this point…

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“Playing beyond this place is almost certainly a single of the ultimate goals that we have had all yr.”

King (41-15) enters with a university document 41 wins, including 15 straight, profitable four games by a single run apiece to seize very last week’s Meeting Carolinas event for the third time in university historical past, securing a spot in the 64-group NCAA match field.

“I did not go in the event below the impression at all that we have been certain to keep on actively playing,” Cockerham claimed. “There are so quite a few excellent groups in the location and so numerous groups were being deserving to get in so I was in no way sitting down there heading ‘oh, we are superior either way.’

“It was we have acquired to gain the match, one way or the other or for whatever motive, we have obtained to get it. I consider we explained that as a group too, we were heading to attempt to depart no doubt about it and just win it.”

They hope to do it yet again, starting right now in the Southeast Regional on the turf in Anderson, S.C. No. 4 seed King will encounter No. 5 Lincoln Memorial at 2 p.m., with dwelling-standing and prime-seeded Anderson and No. 8 Francis Marion also conference in the 3-working day, double-elimination bracket.

King split a doubleheader with Lincoln Memorial in February, and split 4 video games with Francis Marion, with both of those wins coming in the Convention Carolinas match.

Cockerham definitely isn’t complaining about King currently being seeded fourth amid eight teams in its pod.

“If you make it 1 by means of 8 you are satisfied because honestly there are only 64 teams that go to the nationwide match,” he stated. “To be 1 of them is a privilege and it does not make a difference wherever you end up.”

The surviving team will advance to a best-of-3 Tremendous Regional upcoming week in opposition to possibly No. 2 Lenoir-Rhyne, No. 3 North Georgia, No. 6 Carson-Newman and No. 7 Wingate, all of whom are meeting beginning nowadays at Lenoir-Rhyne.

The winner of that 1 advances to the NCAA Division II Planet Collection on Might 26-31 in Denver.

That is where King needs to end the season, and Cockerham is assured in his squad that has exhibited good pitching, timely hitting up and down the lineup and a protection that makes the regime performs.

“I don’t believe you want to go in saying we are just happy to be listed here and you never want to go in pondering you have to do far more than what you have performed,” Cockerham said. “We received 41 game titles, we would like to think we have finished a thing very properly so just hold carrying out that.

“The match normally comes down to throwing strikes and accomplishing the plan factors and doing them at a high stage and doing them regularly and that is what gives you the best possibility to earn. Our aim has not altered much at all. I assume we know our system for results and just sticking with it.”

Softball is centered about the circle, and Cockerham likes his options, such as Carly Turner (13-1, 3.04 Era), Ridgeview graduate Nikole Counts (19-7, 3.43) and Union’s Marleigh Duncan, who sales opportunities the Twister in appearances (30) and will save (6).

“I feel just regionally we have acquired some of the much better pitching, specially when you appear at our depth that we have,” Cockerham reported. “The energy in quantities that we have as much as the pitching, I imagine truly pays dividends in the match, especially at the end of the year when persons are drained.

“They are rested, they are ready to go and that is most likely the detail I am most energized about is the depth that we have.”

Cockerham has also gotten production throughout the lineup, obtaining again-to-back sixth inning property runs by Rikkelle Miller (.383, 15 HR, 49 RBI) and John Struggle graduate Haylee Dye (.335) to defeat Emmanuel 3-2 to progress to the Meeting Carolinas finals, and then defeated Francis Marion 1-, profitable on a Miller home operate and two-strike pitching by Counts.

Turner (.371, 13, 46) and leadoff batter Erin Foster (.353) are among the the top rated 4 batters in terms of average, but Cockerham mentioned it has a overall group effort. Defensively, the Twister has also been sharp, turning a pair of sport-ending double performs with runners in scoring placement to gain a pair of tourney video games.

“We go players up and down the lineup,” he claimed. “I told the ladies and it is accurate, each individual solitary human being on this staff has stepped up throughout the year and served us earn. All these video games that we have received, it is truly rather neat. I would say with the 50-some games we have performed we have possibly had that lots of diverse lineups.”

King, which was 23-3 at household and 8- at neutral web-sites this year, restricted by themselves to just one match a day underneath the warm South Carolina sun final 7 days. They would enjoy for that to happen again.

“As lengthy as you win you just engage in one sport every working day,” he mentioned. “It was very hot out there and our young ones were being form of joking about, we are just likely to engage in a person activity in the warmth and go again to the lodge.

“Hopefully that is a single of the things that is however driving them this weekend because that is nevertheless the case with this regional. If you acquire that to start with a single you are carried out, that would be great if we could continue on that.”

If not, really don’t expect that to sluggish down the Tornado.

“That is our deal, but we will do whatsoever we have to do, whatsoever it takes,” Cockerham reported. “Ultimately that is the objective. If you have been to draw it up, that would be pleasant.”

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