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Lady Eagles gear up for Lady Rams

The Fort Dale Lady Eagles will take the field this weekend in a doubleheader against the defending AISA AAA champs, Faith Academy.

But coach Scarlett McNaughton is confident that her girls will succeed against the Lady Rams.

"I hear they are a great team," said McNaughton.

"I want my girls to be prepared, but it's only our second game and here we are up against the best team in AISA. We've had a strong practice this week and they've done everything right and worked hard. We had some issues, but we are getting them worked out. I think they are as ready as they can be. I don't think that we will do as poorly as we did against Escambia because they are more prepared."

The Lady Eagles dropped their season opener to the Lady Cougars of Escambia 28-0.

"The weather has cooperated and they have all been there," said McNaughton. "This week they have all been there and have all worked together and it's going to help out in our favor, hopefully."

Fort Dale senior Stephanie Hood will make her first start in game one of the twinbill. But McNaughton isn't putting her up there just because of her class rank.

"It's not just that she's a senior," said McNaughton.

"It's that she has the speed that will get us some strike outs. It's her ability to get the ball across the plate more than anything else. We are going to start with Stephanie then probably end with Carrie Coker and then in the second game, we are probably going to start Carrie and maybe end with Stephanie. But I'm going to see how things go before I make that decision."

McNaughton's Lady Eagles do have two other pitchers that can be worked into the game.

Michelle Hulick and Haley Blackburn each can pitch and will see action this season.

First pitch for Saturday's game is set for 10 a.m. and will be played at Beeland Park.