12/18/13 Eastern’s softball team joins with Christmas Cheer

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EA Softball seniors The Eastern Alamance High School softball seniors and coaches talk with the Enterprise about the team’s participation in Christmas Cheer. Pictured are (front row, l-r) seniors Michaela Walker, Lauren Taylor, and Gracyn Allen-Ingle; and (back row, l-r) head coach Danny Way, and assistant coaches Tiffany Helton and Sammy Ballard.

Karen Carter/Mebane Enterprise

EA Softball seniors
The Eastern Alamance High School softball seniors and coaches talk with the Enterprise about the team’s participation in Christmas Cheer. Pictured are (front row, l-r) seniors Michaela Walker, Lauren Taylor, and Gracyn Allen-Ingle; and (back row, l-r) head coach Danny Way, and assistant coaches Tiffany Helton and Sammy Ballard.

Eastern’s softball team joins with Christmas Cheer
By Karen Carter Enterprise Editor The Mebane Enterprise 12/18/13  
Reprinted with permission.


An athletic team at Eastern Alamance High School that makes the grade with honorsand wins on the field is challenging others to follow them with giving back to the community through Christmas Cheer.

For the second year in a row, the Eagles softball team is helping a family have Christmas through gift giving with the organization Christmas Cheer.

“It felt good last year,” said Lauren Taylor, “a good feeling knowing you’ve helped someone who needed it; leaves a good feeling inside of you.”

EA softball seniors Michaela Walker, Gracyn Allen-Ingle and Taylor were out last Sunday afternoon shopping from a wish list for a family’s gifts designated for a single mom and her two children, a boy and a girl of elementary school age.

“My first time participating in Christmas Cheer, I’m looking forward to helping out somebody in need,” said Walker.

The team voted to take on the project and Allen-Ingle said, “It helps bring the whole softball team together.”

All the softball players donated $20 each and the coaches contributed.“It makes us realize we have a lot of stuff we don’t need and others do need things,” said Allen-Ingle.

“An eye-opener,” said Taylor, “a lot of teenagers want and want. They think it’s the end of the world if they don’t get what they want. But there are parents who can barely put food on the table and their kids don’t get Christmas presents because parents can’t afford them.”

“I’ll contribute, showing people we care and if I were them receiving Christmas
Cheer, I’d feel that people care about me and want to help out,” said Walker.

When asked about the team’s upcoming softball season, Walker said, “I’m excited to play again. We have a work ethic; we’re ready to start again.”

That work ethic on the field and in the classroom and for Christmas Cheer shows that the seniors are willing to lead.

“We can go all out,” said Allen-Ingle. “I’m really excited to play this year, to go all out my senior year. We were so close last year. We’re young, but we’re strong.”

“I want to go out with a bang,” said Taylor. “Being a senior, it’s special and remember it’s about everybody. We’re all capable of going all the way. Yes, we’re strong.”

Last year head softball coach Danny Way came up with the idea for the players to participate in Christmas Cheer.

“I set up meetings with my seniors on a regular basis,” said Way. “They showed interest. Any ideas I have I go to them first.”

Way said the seniors wanted to do Christmas Cheer last year and this year; he said it brings the team together. “Leadership comes from the top from me and Sammy. And the seniors bought into it and the whole team comes together.”

Assistant coach Sammy Ballard said, “We’re more than a team. We want to be a part of the school and the community. Our softball players want to grow up to be good citizens.”

After the Enterprise took a photo of the seniors and coaches and then a photo of the whole team, a quote of the week in front of the weight room, was written: “Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.”

Walker said the team’s work ethic will help make Christmas for their chosen family.