Town rallying behind Devils

Published 8:19 pm Thursday, May 14, 2009

Sports mean so much to the town of Maplesville that the four state championships the Red Devils claim are proudly displayed on the welcome sign.

The 2009 Maplesville softball team will try to earn itself a permanent place in the town’s collective psyche as it competes in the Class 1A state tournament Friday and Saturday at Montgomery’s Lagoon Park.

“I think for any student, not just the girls, something like this boosts their pride in the school,” Maplesville Principal Maggie Hicks said. “We have a long line of tradition here in every sport.”

Donna Honeycutt, who runs the Allison Chase store on main street and whose daughter, Allie, played softball last season, said the town is supportive of the softball team but not as much as if it were a boys team.

“That’s not fair. The girls work just as hard as the boys do,” Honeycutt said. “I hope this helps them get the recognition they deserve.”

Maplesville, who was the runner-up in the South Central Region, will play Spring Garden, the North Central Region champion, at 9 this morning. If the Devils win, they will play again at 5:30 p.m. If they lose, they will play at 4 p.m. in an elimination game.

Maplesville’s state championships have come in girls basketball (1995), football (1996) and baseball (1996 and 1997).

Tom Wolff, with next door to Honeycutt, said he, like the rest of the town, is pulling for the Devils.

“Just go have fun,” Wolff said about the attitude the team should take toward the tournament. “It doesn’t matter if you win or lose at this point; you’re getting to play.

“If they have the most fun of anyone down there, they’ll win the whole thing.”