Atlanta Braves grounds crew members put some finishing touches on the MLB logo portion of one of two "Opening Week" logos on the field in preparation for the Braves home opener tomorrow at Turner Field Thursday afternoon in Atlanta, Ga., April 7, 2011. 
Photo: Jason Getz
Photo: Jason Getz

Five high school athletes to represent Georgia in MLB’s Softball Breakthrough Series

Major League Baseball’s second annual Softball Breakthrough Series will begin in less than two weeks and five Georgia high school softball players are participants.

Approximately 60 young women from around the country will participate in the event from June 12-14 in Oklahoma City, Okla.

The goal of the series is to promote women’s athletics and college softball as a pathway to higher education in underrepresented and underserved communities. 

The athletes who represent Georgia come from Georgia’s Lovejoy High School, Miller Grove High School, Arabia Mountain High School and Southwest DeKalb High School.

Here’s who will be representing the state of Georgia and their stories:

Tajah Clark

  • Shortstop and second base
  • Class of 2018
  • Arabia Mountain High School
  • Decatur, Ga.

“The professional (and) collegiate level of softball has always been one of my dreams,” Clark said. “Ever since I started playing softball, I wanted to expand my horizons to play in college. For a long time I always thought there was a professional level like the MLB, but there wasn't. That's why I want to make it my goal to be able to play in college.”

Tajah Clark is a shortstop and second baseman from Decatur, Ga. Clark is a senior at Arabia Mountain High School.
Photo: Tajah Clark

Nala Moore

  • Left field and outfield
  • Class of 2018
  • Southwest DeKalb High School
  • Decatur, Ga.

"Softball to me is a release and an opportunity to bond with my ‘family,’” Moore said. “Since the age of eight, softball helped me to positively direct my energy and I gained a band of sisters that I love just like real family. I would like to believe women’s athletics today has improved in the last few years.

“I remember when I first started playing softball, I never saw coverage on the TV of the college teams and the only time I saw the USA team play would be during the Olympics. Now, more scholarships are being given to deserving players and I can turn to any sports broadcasting station and see game after game and even the (College) Softball World Series."

Nala Moore is a left fielder and outfielder for Southwest DeKalb High School. Moore is a rising senior from Decatur, Ga.
Photo: Nala Moore

Kennedy Allen

  • Third base and catcher
  • Class of 2019
  • Lovejoy High School
  • Hampton, Ga.

“I started playing this sport at four years old as a t-ball player— only girl on a team of boys— and I still enjoy it at 16 years old,” Allen said. “This is a great sport and I have had great coaching. Ryan Christenson, from ages 7-10, who was a MLB player and is currently a MLB Minor League manager, and my current coach Richard Lee, 10 years of age to present, who has coached the Atlanta RBI team since 2000. I would also like to recognize Alan Butts, most recently the Atlanta Braves catching coach, who had great influence in the way that I play.

“I love the sport of softball because it has taught me a lot – sacrifice, teamwork, how to fail and how to win. Softball is also very fun and it is giving me memories for life. I would love to and plan to play softball at the collegiate level. Hopefully being able to play professionally even with women’s athletics not being recognized like men’s. Maybe one day we will be looked at equally in the sports world because women practice and play just hard."

Third baseman and catcher Kennedy Allen from Lovejoy High School. Allen is a junior from Hampton, Ga.

Dyamond Brown

  • Center field and outfield
  • Class of 2018
  • Arabia Mountain High School
  • McDonough, Ga.

"Softball to me means hard work, dedication, not just physical but mental strength, and the competitive motives inside you,” Brown said. “Women for years have had to prove themselves and their strength to others around them, and softball is one of the ways we show it. From play-to-play, scenario-to-scenario, we always have to stay alert and rise up to the occasion when the thrill of the game presents itself, showing our true and vibrant colors of strength."

Dymond Brown is center fielder and outfielder for Arabia Mountain High School. Brown is a senior from McDonough, Ga.

Deyonce Anderson

  • Shortstop and pitcher
  • Class of 2018
  • Miller Grove High School
  • Stone Mountain, Ga.

"Softball means a lot to me. It is something I use to get away from things and even have fun. Softball is a sport I could never leave for another sport."

Deyonce Anderson is a shortstop and pitcher at Miller Grove High School. Anderson is a senior from Stone Mountain, Ga.
Photo: Deyonce Anderson

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