BATESVILLE – "We’re pumped," said Patrick Robey, South Panola baseball head coach.
The Tiger baseball team will open the 2003 season tonight on the road against Independence. The Tigers open at home Saturday, Feb. 22, against Grenada at 2 p.m.
Robey said he and assistant coach Jeff Walls had a long talk with the team on Wednesday about the upcoming season.
"I think they are ready," Robey said.
Robey sees the upcoming season as a challenge to the team who has only recorded five wins the last two years.
The Tigers have three preseason top 15 teams on the schedule: No. 7 Tupelo, No. 14 Senatobia and No. 15 Southaven.
A complete baseball schedule along with all the spring sports can be found in a special Spring Sports Edition printed in today’s issue of The Panolian.
The schedule has not changed much from last year, according to Robey.
"It’s going to be a challenge everyday," he said. "There are not too many weak teams on our schedule, if any for that matter. Our schedule is set where you have to be at your best every day you play or you could easily get beat every day.
"Our guys are aware of that," Robey continued. "They’ve worked really hard getting ready, because they know what they have ahead of them. They had a real frustrating year last year. I think there is a bit of an insult factor where they are ready to get things turned around."
According to Robey, the players, for the most part haven’t taken anything for granted.
"We have had to stay on them and keep them motivated a little bit but for the most part they have done a real good job of getting ready," Robey said.
The team has improved tremendously, according to Robey, since he first started working with them last summer.