Teams Pitch to Heritage Slugger Carmen Gayler at Their Own Peril

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The Heritage softball team is already in Columbus, where they’ll chase their third straight state title this weekend. And you can bet Generals slugger Carmen Gayler will cause plenty of headaches for the opposition when she digs in at the plate.

Said Heritage pitcher Rachel Gibson:”Carmen walks up to bat. Those coaches are yelling. Back up! Back up! Get back to the fence.”
Carmen Gayler’s plate appearances are the stuff of legend.
Said Gibson:”It just sounds like either the bat is breaking or like something has happened to the ball every time she hits it.”
Said head coach Tanner Moore:”She hit a ball down at Southeast (Whitfield) that I think is still going.”
Even her hitting philosophy is kind of legendary.
Said Gayler:”Coach Moore says that well when you get in the box, you be the dumbest person. You just sing a song, and you get on rhythm. That’s kind of what I do. Sing ‘Yeah’ by Usher in my head. I’m off beat.”
Peace up. Records down. Gayler has set multiple school records including her 53 RBI’s this season. She even owns a record in the weight room with a 305 pound squat. Not only does Gayler possess power, but she has discipline at the plate too.
Said Moore:”Her 115 at-bats or so, she has struck out like four times in a season. That’s just insurmountable. It’s amazing to be honest when you really think about it.”
Said Gayler:”When I was little, I took hitting lessons, and I was told if I could see the ball, I could hit it. Even if it’s just fouled off, and that’s kind of my mentality.”
Gayler is also a big hit in the dugout.
Said Moore:”I think the biggest thing with her. She’s such a leader. She’s so approachable. That’s the biggest thing with her.”
Said Gibson:”She bounces back from her mistakes so well. She handles it so well. That’s why I’ve seen so much growth in her these past few years. It’s just so fun watching that. Honestly it just bounces off everybody to be like her.”

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Rick Nyman grew up in Anniston, Alabama and attended the University of Alabama. His television career started at WJSU-TV in Anniston where he had the opportunity to cover SEC football with Alabama and Auburn. Anniston is just 20 minutes from the Talladega Speedway, so NASCAR was a big part of his sports coverage. Due to this he was able to interview Davey Allison, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, and several other top-name NASCAR drivers. Rick's next television job was in Savannah, Georgia, where he covered basketball player Kwame Brown (now with the Washington Wizards), who later became the first ever high school player selected as the top pick in the NBA draft. He covered the PGA Tour's annual swing thru Hilton Head and also had the opportunity of covering the Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl appearance in 1999 in Miami. Rick especially enjoys all the atmosphere, tradition and drama of college football. He also likes profiling sports personalities and learning what drives them both on and off the field. If he's not covering sports, he's either watching Seinfield or David Letterman, playing golf, reading, or working out. What he enjoys about Chattanooga is the passion people have for sports. The mountainous region of Chattanooga reminds him of his hometown of Anniston, which also has big, beautiful trees and plenty of hills. You can contact Rick at rnyman@wdef.com.