LAURINBURG — The tradition of placing larger-than-life softball signs on the fences for seniors will continue thanks to a Shaw Academy teacher and a couple of her students.
The Scotland softball team has traditionally tacked the signs, which are wooden circles painted to look like a giant softball with the players name and number on it, to the outfield wall as a way to honor the team’s senior players. However, coach Patrick Williams needed to find someone artistically inclined to help him out this year.
That’s when Barbara Simpson stepped in. Simpson is an art teacher at Shaw Academy, where Williams also teaches, and she constructed the signs for the three seniors on the team. She wasn’t alone, as she was helped out by students Kayla Best and Andrew Montgomery.
“It was a great way to combine athletics with the cultural arts,” Simpson said.
The three signs are now spaced out evenly on the chain link fence at Scotland’s field, where the Scots played a doubleheader Tuesday. Scotland won both of those games against Terry Sanford and is now 3-0 on the season. The Scots play Jack Britt on March 17 at home.
The three seniors — Avery Callahan, Nikki Hogan and Abby Bray — said they wanted to find a way to thank Simpson for making the signs. So they came up with the idea of giving her Scotland T-shirts and surprised her with them on Thursday morning.
Callahan pitches and plays infield for the Scots while Bray is the team’s catcher and Hogan is in the outfield.
Williams said he also wanted to thank Greg Batten, principal of Scotland High School, for letting the players come into school later than usual so they could give Simpson the shirts at Shaw.
“It’s a good way to reward the seniors. They started something and they finished it, and not a lot of kids can say that,” Williams said.