By David Wheeler/Special to the NEMS Daily Journal
Cotton States Baseball has expanded from the college ranks to high school and junior high boys over the years.
The girls now get to take their swings as well.
The extremely popular baseball organization is beginning the Cotton States Softball League for high school age girls. The Cotton States organization is shooting for a three week sign-up period, with play planned to begin in early July at the New Albany Sportsplex, running in conjunction with its baseball leagues.
“This will be basically molded the exact same way as baseball,” said Sam Creekmore, the Cotton States baseball commissioner. “We’ve been thinking about this for years, but we’ve been so busy with baseball we haven’t had the personnel to do it until now.”
While patterned after the popular high school baseball league, which also begins in July, the softball league does have some minor differences.
The main thing that will be different will be the grades playing in the league.
Baseball currently has grades 9-12, while the new softball league will have grades 7-12.
“We felt some of the more developed softball players were younger,” Creekmore said. “So after talking with several people, we decided to allow the extra grades for softball.”
MississippiSelectSports.com should have the softball site up and running this week, which begins the three week sign-up period, with play planned to begin July 7.
Creekmore urges interested players to sign up within that time frame to allow for ordering uniforms, which is included in the registration fee. Creekmore anticipates up to 10 teams for the July schedule, with New Albany’s Tom Zahller as the softball commissioner.
Separate from the softball league, Cotton States plan a high school softball team tournament June 21-23, patterned after the NEMCABB tournament at the end of June.
The leagues have several key dates approaching within the next two weeks.
Play is scheduled to begin in the college league on Saturday.
And next week is the sign-up deadline on June 7 for the high school July league, and the separate junior high league for grades 7-8.