This past Friday night the Huntland Lady Hornets softball team defeated Community high school on senior night 15-0 in three innings of play. However, the rout is not the story here, but rather about the tear inducing post game tribute paid to retiring head coach Reggie Campbell.
Following the game seniors Morgan “Mo” Hensley, and manager Dylan Smith were recognized as part of their last regular season home game. The game was also the last for Campbell who is retiring after 33 years of teaching, and 22 years as the head coach of the Lady Hornets.
Unbeknownst to Campbell the Hornets’ family had something in place to honor their beloved coach.
Players from Campbell’s first ever Lady Hornet team in 1991 were in attendance and came onto the field to surprise their former coach. Several former players were also in attendance for the special moment.
Campbell is a Huntland Hornet through and through, playing football, basketball, and baseball for the school. After graduating in 1977 and earning his education degree Campbell made coaching and teaching stops at Franklin County and Cornersville High Schools. Then is 1988 found his way back home in as a teacher.
In 1991 Campbell coached Huntland’s first ever softball team, largely made up by underclassmen.
Campbell picked up on the sport quickly, despite it being just his first time coaching softball. He took the 1994 and 1995 teams to the state tournament, claiming second place in 1995.
Many of his players have gone on to compete at the college level, just another testament to his coaching abilities.
Thanks to Campbell, Huntland softball is alive and well. This year’s team just finished the regular season with a 12-8-1 overall record, and an 8-4 District 9-A record.
With all his former players on the field following the game, Campbell was speechless.
“This has just floored me,” Campbell said of his shock for his own tribute on senior night. “I love every one of these girls that I’ve had, they’ve all played hard.” Campbell added.
Campbell’s final season isn’t over just yet. Hopefully Campbell gets to put another chapter down in the Lady Hornet history books, as his team prepares for tournament play.