Byrd signs with SWU

Alexander's Katie Byrd (front row, second from right) signed her Letter of Intent on Nov. 13 to play softball at Southern Wesleyan University. Filling out the front row, from left to right, are Dylan Byrd (brother), Kim Byrd (mother), and Scott Byrd (father). Pictured in the back row, from left to right, are Nathan Hand (AHS principal), Jaime Monrow (AHS assistant softball coach), Zach Romain (AHS assistant softball coach), Zack Graham (AHS head softball coach), Michael Klim (Georgia Knockdowns travel ball coach), and Chris Small (AHS athletic director).

Rick Winters / Douglas County Sentinel

Alexander’s Katie Byrd signed her Letter of Intent on Nov. 13 to play softball at Southern Wesleyan University. Byrd, who played second base for the Lady Cougars, accepted a partial academic/athletic scholarship offer to play for the Lady Warriors.

“I really liked the campus, the girls and the coach,” Byrd said on why she chose to attend Wesleyan. “I wanted to go to a private college and was looking for a D-II school so it was a perfect fit.”

Byrd has committed to a team that is in transition with the program being taken over by new head coach, Becca Staton. Staton accepted the coaching job fresh out of the Lady Warrior program. She was a four year player for SWU, competing in 183 games. She compiled 21 RBIs as a senior, which ranked fourth on a team that won 28 games in 2013 and advanced to the conference tournament for the first time in three years.

Staton was named head coach on Sept. 24 and Byrd went to visit the campus and the new coach, and found out what the expectations would be for her coming into the school next fall.

“She said she sees me possibly playing my first year and that she sees a lot of potential for me,” Byrd said.

Byrd has been the starting second baseman for Alexander for the last two seasons and has anchored the bottom of the order. She has won the Cougar Award for the last three years, which is given to the player who shows great character and integrity.

“If there was a poster child for character and integrity, it would be her,” said AHS coach Zack Graham. “Her second base abilities are unbelievable and second to none in our region. She is the type of kid you want on your program.”

Byrd sees her own time at AHS as a positive one.

“It meant a lot to me to play here and the coaches and girls have taught me so much,” Byrd said. “Coach Graham was awesome and he taught me many things about teamwork and other things.”

Graham sees Byrd and Southern Wesleyan as a perfect fit.

“Division-II is a good level of ball for her,” Graham said. “It is a good christian school with a lot of character and integrity so she will fit right in.”

Byrd is uncertain on a major right now but is interested in Criminal Justice.

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