Losing doesn’t augur well with Regan Weekly.
“I hate losing more than I love winning,” said Weekly, the 5Star Preps Softball Player of the Year.
“That really pushes me to be better,” she continued.
That mindset drove Weekly and The King’s Academy to the state Division II-A softball championship in Murfreesboro.
The Lady Lions, heavy favorites to claim their third state title in four year coming into the tournament, had to overcome some major adversity to fulfill their lofty expectations.
After dropping an unexpected 7-6 decision to Chattanooga Christian in the winners bracket finals the Lady Lions found themselves in dire straights.
Not only did they have to come back and win two elimination games the following day to stay alive, they had to do it without coach Marc Weekly who was ejected during the loss to the Lady Chargers.
That’s when that burning drive to win kicked in for his daughter and fellow seniors Maddie Webber, Haydyn Jenkins and Katelyn Norris, according to Marc Weekly.
“I had gotten thrown out and went into the huddle after the game,” explained Marc Weekly.
“Give credit to our seniors, Regan, Maddie, Haydyn and Katelyn,” explained Marc Weekly.
“They said, ‘guys, lets win the next two games and get our coach back.’ This was a team that was going to do what it had to, no matter what.”
The Lady Lions bounced back with an 8-6 win over Friendship Christian and a 17-2 clubbing of Chattanooga Christian to set up a final championship game against the Lady Chargers the next day.
With junior pitcher Kaylan Cole leading the way, TKA edged Chattanooga Christian 3-1 to win the state championship and put a cap on a historic 38-6 season.
“It showed how resilient we can be,” said Regan Weekly, who will play in college at Dartmouth.
“We don’t lay down. Winning the state championship the way we did makes it sweeter.”
With the state title secure, the postseason individual awards started rolling in for Regan Weekly – and rightfully so.
The second baseman posted big numbers at the plate, including a .566 average with 21 home runs, 70 RBIs and a seldom-seen slugging percentage of 1.196.
She was selected as Gatorade’s Player of the Year in Tennessee.
“All the credit goes to her,” said Marc Weekly.
“Her focus for her senior year was about getting in the weight room, working on her core and power and preparing to play in college.”
Marc Weekly said it has been a blessing being able to coach his daughter.
“I don’t know if will all sink in until she is gone,” he said.
“I’m sure I’ll be sitting in my house, crushed, when she doesn’t come home (from school) every day. I’ve been taking her to the field since she was really young. To say that God has blessed us would be an understatement.”
But Marc Weekly said it’s time for the next chapter.
“It’s time for me to get out of the way and let her shine.”
Likewise, Regan Weekly said it is bittersweet to think about her time with her dad winding down on the softball field.
“This is my last summer of summer ball under him and I’m going to try and take in every single minute of it,” she said.
“I’ve played for my dad ever since I started playing softball. Of course, it has been hard at times. He’s harder on me than other girls, but he is such a great coach and dad.
“He never let being a dad overpower being a coach or being a coach overpower being a dad. He is such a great coach and a great dad.”