AC Softball Signs Former Lady Hornet Parker


Sophomore Slugger Reunited with Former Teammate

Angelina College Lady Roadrunner softball this week offered a homecoming of sorts to a player head coach Mark Mattson coveted when she first graduated high school.

Kaylee “KK” Parker signed a letter of intent to join the Lady ‘Runners beginning in the fall of 2016. Parker spent her freshman year with Pensacola College in Florida, but yearned to return to the area in which she first sprouted her softball roots.

“It’s back home, and it’s where I belong,” Parker said. “I had fun in Florida, but I needed to be closer to home so my family can see me play.”

Parker will be joining current Lady Roadrunner and former high school teammate Bryli Lee. The two helped the Hudson High School Lady Hornet softball team win back-to-back state championships.

“It’ll be so neat to play with Bryli again,” Parker said. “It’s exciting.”

Parker had other options, but said the decision to join coaches Mark and Barbi Mattson and the Lady ‘Runner program was easy.

“I’m excited to play for these coaches,” Parker said. “All the girls and the coaches are fun to be around, and I want to have fun playing softball again.”

“We loved KK from the beginning, from the first time I saw her play at Hudson,” Mattson said. “We’re very impressed with her. She can play multiple positions, and she hits the way Barbi and I like.

“And being around her at the park, we love her character and how she showed us the way she holds herself. Her mom’s a great person as well, so having them becoming part of our family was a no-brainer for Barbi and me.”

Parker plans to major in elementary education and will become a teacher when the last out of her career is recorded. She said she’s not looking too far ahead; she’s only focused on what happens in her sophomore season.

“It depends on how the next year goes. I’ve accepted that my softball career may end after this next year, but if I have a great season and have the opportunity to continue, I don’t think I’ll be able to give it up.”

Gary Stallard
Sports Information Director Gary Stallard, who also serves as a Liberal Arts Instructor, begins his eleventh season with Angelina College. Following a career as a U.S. Marine, Stallard completed his bachelor’s degree at Stephen F. Austin University, where he majored in English and Journalism. For more than 16 years, he has worked as a sports writer/columnist/photographer for the Lufkin Daily News; he continues to contribute free-lance articles on occasion. Stallard has won several awards for writing, including the Golden Hoops Award for basketball writing in 2003, Regional Sports Writer of the Year in 2004, and the Texas Press Association’s first-place award for column writing in 2007 and in 2014. He has also done basketball, football and baseball radio and live streaming play-by- play and color commentary for an ESPN affiliate. Currently Stallard serves as play-by-play broadcaster for AC basketball, baseball and softball games. Prior to arriving at Angelina College, Stallard taught English at Lufkin High School for four years. He currently teaches Developmental Writing classes at AC. He and his wife Susan live in Lufkin.

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