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Alexis Chapman slides safely home for the Paola Lady Panther softball team. Chapman, a senior, is back to roam the outfield this spring.

PAOLA — The Lady Panther softball program returns two veterans this spring.

Back to lead the Paola softball team are senior Alexis Chapman and junior Kate Ediger.

Twenty-three girls are out for the team this season, including four seniors. The roster also has five juniors, four sophomores and 10 freshmen.

“We don’t have a lot of experience coming in, but everyone is working very hard every day,” Paola coach Sherry Ball said.

“Alexis Chapman and Kate Ediger, along with our other seniors and juniors, are doing a great job of being leaders and mentors for our younger players,” Ball said.

Other seniors on the team are Taylor Worthey, Morgan Baska and Rylee Pratt.

Juniors are Kyia Fuller, Madison Bell, Hannah Billesbach and Ediger.

Sophomores on the roster are Maggie Kauk, Jacie Cullor, Eden Troxel and Ava Kehl.

Freshmen eager to make an impact are Makayla Hendrickson, Haley Hines, Lily Jevne, Ashlyn Wade, Avery Winterschied, Anna Kane, Ashley Winterscheid, Olivia Bassett, Ashlyn Brown and Aubrey Huber.

Coach Ball is entering her fourth season as head coach. She also served as an assistant coach with Troy Collier for many years.

The Lady Panthers are ready to compete, Ball said.

“Our goal this year, as with every year, is to work hard every day toward becoming the best players and coaches we can be,” she said. “We want to be better today than we were yesterday. We want to enjoy the season and have fun playing the game we all love.”

Sports Editor Gene Morris can be reached at (913) 294-2311 or gene.morris@miconews.com.

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