ONE MORE WIN: Lady Raiders host Smyrna Friday with state spot on the line

One more win.

That is all the Central High School Lady Raider softball team needs to return to the TSSAA BlueCross Spring Fling in Murfreesboro next week. And from there, anything can happen – last year is proof of that.

But the one final hurdle will not be an easy one. The Lady Raiders welcome Smyrna to Manchester for the state sectional on Friday, May 20, 2022 – first pitch is set for 6:30 p.m. The winner moves on to the state tournament next week with 7 other teams in 4A. The loser’s season comes to a close.

Smyrna enters Friday with a 27–7 overall record and an impressive resume. The Lady Bulldogs have only lost games to two teams from the state of Tennessee – once to Morristown West in a weekend tournament and four losses to Stewarts Creek, including a 7-5 loss in the Region 4-4A Championship. Smyrna’s other two losses came to teams from Alabama.

Meanwhile, Coffee County enters Friday’s sectional coming off of two nice wins, an 8-2 effort over Walker Valley in the region semi-finals and a 6-2 revenge victory over Warren County in the Region 3-4A championship. And don’t forget postseason pedigree, the Lady Raiders are used to big games in May – reaching the state tournament last year and finishing state runner up. Part of that postseason run last spring was an 11-1 win over Smyrna in the Region 4-3A semi-finals to eliminate the Lady Bulldogs.

Friday’s sectional game will be broadcast live on Thunder Radio at 107.9 FM, 1320 AM, 106.7 FM, Manchester Go App and First pitch at 6:30 p.m., pregame at 6:15 p.m.

The 2022 Coffee County Lady Raider softball team celebrates with the Region 3-4A Championship plaque after a 6-2 win over Warren County Wednesday, May 18, 2022. — Thunder Radio photo by Holly Peterson