She saw a lot of familiar faces.
When the LaGrange College softball camp kicked off last week, Jennifer Claybrook welcomed back a bunch of girls who were a part of last year’s camp as well.
Claybrook, the head coach of the Panthers, directed the five-day camp that kicked off on Monday and wrapped up on Friday.
Outside of a couple of newcomers, Claybrook said most of the girls have participated in the camp in previous years.
“You can tell that they’ve really committed,” Claybrook said. “You can really tell from year to year how much more they’ve improved.”
Many of the girls play travel softball, and already have a firm foundation in the fundamentals in the game.
Claybrook said a major goal of her’s during the week was to make sure the girls know how much fun softball is.
“I want them to learn fundamentals, but my biggest thing is I want them to enjoy to play,” Claybrook said. “That’s what we’ve been working on.”
There was plenty of work going on during the week.
During the three hours each day, the campers were put through a number of drills.
“We focus on fundamentals,” Claybrook said. “We break things down, and make sure they understand. We did a lot of hitting in the morning. We do a lot of hand-eye coordination things.”
Claybrook’s main goal, though, was to ensure that the players had smiles on their faces.
“We want them to have a good time and enjoy it, so when they think of softball it’s fun,” Claybrook said.
Claybrook was helped out during the week by Shanna Brumbelow, a former LaGrange College player who is now an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator.
Also lending a hand during the week was Claybrook’s father, Roy DeMooney, an assistant coach with the Panthers.
Earlier this summer, Claybrook hosted a camp in Alabama, and she said that’s a good way to get to know some different young players and their parents.
“We’ve got a good group over there. It’s nice,” Claybrook said. “It’s good to build that relationship.”
And this fall, Claybrook said she’ll host some youth clinics where the players will get a chance to work with the college players.
“That way they would meet with all of the college kids, to interact with them,” Claybrook said.
Reach Kevin Eckleberry at (706) 884-7311 (ext. 232) or on Twitter @lagrangesports