To the Editor:
Sam Hatcher, I applaud you and the two other proponents, John McDearman and Jere McCulloch, for your column in the May 21 edition of The Wilson Post in generating interest in Lebanon mass transit systems
As a senior citizen of some 78 years, I have had the opportunity of riding the Tennessee Central Rails on several occasions.
In 1942 after our farm on Oak Point Hill in Norene was covered up with hundreds of U.S. Army maneuver soldiers, Mom was uneasy with all the soldiers about. Dad was working at the VA Hospital in Murfreesboro sometimes nights/swing shifts. Dad could only get 4 gallons of gasoline per week, so Dad stayed in quarters at the VA Hospital. Mom and Dad decided to move from our farm to Nashville, where she would work for her former employer, Satsuma Tea Room, to help pay off their mortgage notes on their farm.
By TOMMY BRYAN, sports editor
It didn’t take long for the rumor mill to get cranked up after Ashley Johnson submitted her resignation Friday morning as girls basketball coach at Lebanon High. For the record, Johnson has accepted a fellowship at Michigan State University and will begin work on her Ph.D in education.
Several coaches with extensive high school and even college coaching experience have expressed serious interest in the position. Johnson, 25, leaves LHS with a record of 29-27 over two seasons and with the admiration of outgoing principal Nancy Ash.
“Ashley was an outstanding teacher, coach and role model for our young ladies,” said Ash, “she really wrestled with this decision.”
Johnson, the TSSAA Class AAA Miss Basketball at Shelbyville Central High in 2002 and a standout player at Ole Miss, said, “I’m being led in a different direction. Lebanon will always have a special place in my heart. It was extremely tough telling the girls -- but working toward my doctorate is something I’ve always wanted to do.”
Johnson took the Lebanon job in May of 2008, replacing Darian Brown -- who left after two seasons to take an administrative position at Wilson Central.
The job is much better today than it was four years ago when Brown took over, especially with a solid group of ninth graders coming in and the prospect of a new school in two years.
While Ash is tasked with fielding the initial calls and e-mails regarding the position, she has already accepted a position in the Central Office -- leaving the responsibility of actually hiring the new coach in the hands of the incoming principal.
Ash said Tuesday she has named Devilette assistant Erica Bragg as interim head coach.
Friendship 2, Nashville Christian 1
MURFREESBORO -- Friendship Christian pushed across a run in the bottom of the seventh to down Nashville Christian 2-1 in the opening round of the Class A state tournament Tuesday at Riverdale.
Friendship improved to 29-5-1 overall and will play Riverside High (31-5) in a 12:30 p.m. game Wednesday at Riverdale.
Chris Hall knocked in Kyle Wood from second with the game-winner, breaking a 1-1 tie.
Freshman pitcher Brennan Swindoll ran his record to 13-1 on the season with another gym. The lefty threw a four-hitter and struck out five, walking two.
Mt. Juliet 15, Science Hill 7
MURFREESBORO -- Mt. Juliet zoomed to the second round of the Class AAA baseball tournament with a 15-7 win over Science Hill Tuesday evening at Oakland. Mt. Juliet (35-7) will take on Houston at 12:30 p.m. wednesday, back at Oakland.
The Golden Bears ripped 16 hits and took advantage of eight Science Hill errors. Mt. Juliet trailed 7-2, but rallied for the win.
“We got down 7-2 and we told the kids, ‘Just keep chipping away and don’t give up’ and they never do,” MJ Coach Mark Purvis said. “They’re a very resilient group and they just kept plugging away and Science Hill helped us in certain spots.”
Mt. Juliet narrowed the deficit to 7-5 before erupting for eight runs in the fifth inning as 12 batters went to the plate.
First baseman T.J. Diffenderfer hit a two-run homer in the third and had four RBIs for the Bears.
“We showed how good we can be today,” Diffenderfer said. “A couple games we had to rally like that, but whenever we need to we get it done.”
Every Golden Bears starter contributed at least one hit.
“We’re never out of a game and we always have a chance to score runs,” Mt. Juliet shortstop Ethan Gross said. “I wasn’t really worried when (Science Hill went up 7-2) because I knew we could hit and I knew we could come back. We’re more situational hitters.”
Forrest 4, Friendship Christian 1
MURFREESBORO -- Friendship Christian fell into the losers' bracket of the Class A state tournament Tuesday with a 4-1 loss to powerful Forrest High at Starplex.
The Lady Commanders (21-19) face a 10 a.m. elimination game Wednesday against University School (17-18) at Starplex.
Forrest (27-5) rapped out nine hits against FCS pitchers Brooke Klinefelter and Hunter Holland.
FCS scored its lone run int he bottom of the sixth on three straight singles by Laurel Burroughs, Kaity Woodall and Amber Hunt.