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West and Pippenger Sign Softball Scholarships on Thursday

Sarah West signs a softball scholarship with the University of the Cumberlands. Joining Sarah are front row, (left to right) Beth West, mother; Sarah; Chris West, father. Back row: Brandon McWhorter, CHS head coach; Bailey Dillender, University of Cumberlands head coach; Alyssa Richards, University of Cumberlands assistant coach; Jon Spears, CHS assistant coach.

A pair of Coffee County CHS softball players inked their National Letters of Intent with the University of the Cumberlands on Thursday.  Seniors Sarah West and Gracie Pippenger each signed to continue play at the Williamsburg, Kentucky University in separate ceremonies at the CHS library.  The Lady Raider duo join a Patriots softball class described as “a very highly touted recruiting class” according to University of the Cumberlands head coach Bailey Dillender.  “We want to build a winning culture so it is important to bring in winners (like Sarah and Gracie)” said Dillender. 

West verbally committed to Coach Dillender in the summer of 2018 after her campus visit.  “It felt right(on my visit) and I fell in love with the campus” said West.  West is expecting to play as a utility player but “will play where they need me” said Sarah.  Coach Dillender expects Sarah to “fill a void in the middle of our lineup immediately.”  Coffee County CHS head coach Brandon McWhorter described West as “the heart of our team.  She is a Division 1 hitter and makes plays on defense.”  McWhorter also described her as a great leader with good instincts and “great hands.”

Gracie Pippenger signs a softball scholarship with the University of the Cumberlands. Joining Gracie are front row, (left to right) Kerri Pippenger, mother; Gracie; Keith Pippenger, father; Cole Pippenger, brother. Back row: Brandon McWhorter, CHS head coach; Alyssa Richards, University of Cumberlands assistant coach; Bailey Dillender, University of Cumberlands head coach; Timmy Richardson, travel ball coach.

Pippenger, who committed earlier this year, liked the coaching staff and campus as well.  “It is the right size and I look forward to doing my best(at the University of the Cumberlands).  Coach Dillender has known Gracie for a while and “followed her for several years.”  Dillender expects Pippenger to compete for a starting position immediately.   “Gracie gives us some great firepower offensively and can play multiple positions defensively.”  Coach McWhorter called Pippenger a player with  “high softball intelligence with a will to succeed.  After her ACL surgery, Gracie showed a lot of toughness and determination” added McWhorter.

The University of the Cumberlands is a private liberal arts college located in Williamsburg, Kentucky.  The Patriots are a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), competing in the Mid-South Conference. 

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