For the third straight year, the Elite 80 is being held as a lead-in to the three-day, 40-team Atlanta Legacy Showcase. Both showcases share the same purpose — taking the best softball talent the area has to offer, putting them in front of a college coaches from around the Southeast.
Last year, players were showcased in front of coaches from Georgia, Georgia Tech, Kennesaw State, Mercer, Furman and Jacksonville State, among others.
So far, the showcase has provided great results.
“I’d say about 70 or 80 percent of the players in the Elite 80 event go on to play at the college level,” said Kennesaw Mountain softball coach Lisa Chapman, the event’s primary organizer. “Out goal is to make it as convenient as possible to show the players skills to all the college coaches.”
Players ages 14-17 were selected from nine regional showcases held throughout June around the state. Those invited to this week’s events have been divided into six teams that will play two games apiece today.
Participants from Cherokee County include Cherokee’s Layken Adkins and Kelli McCormack, Creekview’s Morgan Chumbler, Etowah’s Payton Curtis and outfielder Jennifer Ertel and River Ridge’s Anna Michelle Friesz.
Eleven players will highlight Cobb County’s contingent, including five from Kennesaw Mountain — Lexi Bates, Rebekah Farris, Amanda Hallman, Molly Uhrman and Kathryn Woody — and North Cobb teammates Casey Page and Bryanna Vazquez.
Also invited are Allatoona’s Makenzie Colwart, Harrison’s Emily Stallings, Hillgrove’s Taylor Decelles and Marietta’s Taylor Hartenbach.
In addition to the Elite 80 Showcase providing an easy stop for college coaches to see some of the state’s best talent, it also makes it easier for players to start a potential recruiting network of their own. Chapman said the showcase is a big opportunity for players to build their profiles and databases with names and contact information for prospective college coaches.