PEMBROKE, GA (WTOC) - The Bryan County Middle School baseball team looks like your average group of players.
They started the season off by winning the Coastal Middle School Region Preseason Tournament and went undefeated to begin the year- but that isn’t what makes the team unique. When the school needed a new baseball coach, it was two teachers who stepped up to the plate.
“Hey, what do you think about coaching baseball? Okay," Melissa Adams said. “I kind of laughed it off. Hey, you’re coaching baseball, right? Um, sure. I’m coaching baseball?”
“We are super proud of what they’ve done," said Bryan County Middle School Principal, Liz Raeburn. "It’s been an awesome season. Obviously we have two incredible educators that are coaching our team, so we feel really good about that ... Lots of teamwork, lots of hard work together, and not intimidated at all by the women coaches, so we love that.”
There’s no crying in baseball, but at least in Bryan County, there are women.
“For the most part, it has been positive. We have run in to a few officials who have given the snide comments. We’ve run in to one coach who wouldn’t schedule with us. We’ve run in to one coach who wouldn’t get beat by ‘the girl team again’, so I mean, we have had some obstacles, but overall, I mean, it’s baseball,” Adams explained.
Raeburn said Coach Adams and Coach Ennis drew some confused looks at first.
“Where are your real coaches at? Things like that. But I think as they’ve seen, they’re not just two teachers or two moms that are out here substituting .”
What started as a running joke, has turned in to two women leading the Redskins to a 12-2 record with one regular season game left to play.
“We’ve had great community support. Our administration, teachers, staff, parents. Everyone in the community has really been behind us 100 percent," Blaine Ennis said.
For the team, it’s business as usual, but they notice their coaches add motivation for teams in the other dugout.
“They come out and try harder, I guess, because it’s girls and they don’t want to get beat by girls, but they don’t like it, I don’t think,” said 8th grade shortstop and pitcher, Trent Lanier.
The players are learning both on and off the field.
Gender doesn’t matter in terms of coaching, right? So, it’s about the experience they have and they have responded really well to having the female coaches. They haven’t really blinked an eye. They just want to win games," Raeburn said.
“They teach us not to judge on gender, just from what they have done for us,” Lanier added.
Playoffs for the team begin in less than two weeks.