Corinth softball team eager to test new turf

Corinth is putting the finishing touches on a new turf softball field. (Corinth HIgh School)

Corinth is putting the finishing touches on a new turf softball field. (Corinth HIgh School)

By Gene Phelps

Daily Journal

Corinth’s Lady Warriors and their future softball opponents will have to go cold turkey on sunflower seeds and gum.

Those two items will be a no-no when Corinth begins play, hopefully later this spring, on its new artificial turf softball field.

“It feels nice and it looks nice,” Corinth coach Janna LaBarrearre said. “There’s not going to be a lot of upkeep … no sunflower seeds and gum.”

Workers were spreading the rubber infill this week on the synthetic surface at the new complex, located about three-fourths of a mile from the high school.

The infield has brown turf while the outfield turf is green. The field has markings for fastpitch (60 feet between bases, 43 feet from pitching circle to plate) and slowpitch (65 feet and 50 feet).

The dimensions are 225 feet down the lines, 227.5 in the gaps and 230 to center. The outfield fence is 8 feet high in the left and right, and 16 feet in center.

“It’s unbelievable,” Corinth athletics director Chris Coleman said. “It’s softball’s time. It’s their field.”

Coleman said plans call for a baseball field, likely turfed, to be built at the complex. He believes the football program will eventually have artificial turf at its on-campus facility.

LaBarrearre hopes her fastpitch team will be using the field for practice and late-season games by the last week of the month.

‘True hops’

“It’s going to be something else,” she said. “I can’t believe it. We started this process three years ago.”

LaBarrearre expects the surface will provide “true hops” for fielders. “Right now, it’s pretty soft,” she said. “When we get all the rubber in it will be a little faster. It’s different than I thought it would be. It’s not as hard as I thought.”

Corinth’s field will be the first for high school softball or baseball in Northeast Mississippi.

gene.phelps@journalinc.com