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GMC\’s Amanda Hall signs to play softball with Middle Georgia

GMC\’s Amanda Hall signs to play softball with Middle Georgia

By Keich Whicker – The Union-Recorder
One of central Georgia\’s hottest softball talents is staying put.

After four years of turning heads on the diamond in Milledgeville, Georgia Military College\’s Amanda Hall decided to stay close to home and inked a scholarship with Middle Georgia College in Cochran on Thursday morning.

\”I love playing,\” Hall smiled, the ink still drying on the papers, \”so I\’m real excited about it. I just love going out there and being with the people and I love the game – it\’s great competition.\”

MGC head softball coach Ken Phillips called Hall, \”one of the most outstanding players in the state,\” and said he wanted to recruit her immediately after he saw her play for the first time last summer.

\”I watched her play all last summer, but I made up my mind the first time I saw her play in Dublin,\” he said. \”She has great skills and great athleticism. There\’s not much more you could ask for in a player.\”

During her four years at GMC, Hall earned a .540 batting average, smacked 14 home runs and collected 148 RBIs at the plate. She was named Class A player of the year in 2004 and an alternate for the All-State team.

It was those sort of numbers and honors that prompted GMC head coach Garry Couch to say he was losing one the finest talents he\’d ever coached.

\”She\’s probably the best player I\’ve ever coached in any sport, without a doubt,\” he said. \”She\’s got all the tools. We (GMC) were 81-13 the four years she was here. You can\’t put that all on one person, but she was definitely very important.\”

When she gets to Cochran next fall, Phillips said he expects Hall to make an immediate impact on his program and help the team carry on the winning tradition begun in 2004. That\’s when MGC had its best-ever season, going 28-12 overall and 11-5 in the conference to finish second in the conference and second in the region tournament.

\”She\’s an impact player,\” he said. \”She\’s going to come right in and play shortstop for us and hit in the three or four spot, depending on who I recruit around her.\”

For Hall, a scholarship signals a return on all the lonely hours she spent tossing the ball around with her father or hitting in the batting cage behind her house.

\”I\’ve worked on my game a whole bunch,\” she said. \”I have all my supplies at home and I work there. People don\’t really see it, but I work really hard.\”

As one of the people who benefited from her extra practice, Couch knew all about how hard Hall worked over the last four years to put herself in the position she was in on Thursday.

\”It\’s not just what she did at practice,\” he said. \”She works all the time outside of practice and has been as long as I\’ve known her. Her whole life has been dedicated toward today, and that says a lot about her work ethic. She brings intensity, leadership, work ethic and just pure good character. You can be good and have all the talent and go to a great program, but if you don\’t have any character, you\’re not going to pan out and make anything of yourself. Amanda (Hall) is a good person. Her parents raised her to have good character and so I know she\’ll do fine.\”

Hall said she picked MGC because of its size and because she enjoyed her visit there with the girls on the team.

\”The school was really small and that\’s what I really like about it,\” she said. \”I went with the players to the dorms and that was fun. It felt like I was home there. The girls are really close and seemed to click together very well and I just wanted to be a part of that.\”

To reach sports writer Keich Whicker, call him at (478) 453-1465.