Pointer was a member of the last Bremen team to win a state championship during a 30-0, undefeated season her senior year. Now she will take her team to Columbus to try and achieve that title once again.
"I'm ready. I've been ready for this my whole career. I'm ready for them. I can't wait for them to get down there. It's something else," Pointer said. "I can tell them and share with them a lot of things a lot of kids don't get to take part in or experience … They know that there's a tradition here, and that's what I try to emphasize."
Before the season started, Pointer showed her Lady Blue Devils (23-7) what their goal was for this season.
"I showed them a picture of the Georgia [High School] state [championship] logo, and it's been 149 days since I showed them that picture. I told them that day, 'This is our goal and we're going to have to work every day to get there. We're not going to be successful all the time, but we're going to learn and we're going to keep moving,'" Pointer said.
There have been some bumps in the road that have come at different points of the season, most notably a frustrating showing in the semifinal game of the Region 5-AA Tournament and during the first game of the second round of the state playoffs against Calhoun. Both times the Lady Blue Devils responded.
"In our region tournament, we played awful and we came back with fury. The best time, though, was at Calhoun when we were down 3-0 [in the second game]. I told them at the beginning of the game, we're going to find out what they're made of with their backs against the wall," Pointer said. "Calhoun didn't know what hit them. They didn't know what hit them the next day, either. It was fun to be successful there and to see them grow."
There are four seniors on the team that have been working even before they were on the high school varsity squad for this chance. Now that they have it, they want to make the most of it.
"I feel honored. We've worked so hard for this, and I feel accomplished for all the goals we've accomplished this year," senior first baseman Kayleigh Medlin said. "I think each one of us are going to go into it thinking no one can defeat us. We're going to leave no doubt in our opponent's mind that we are the better team."
Outfielder Morgan Tucker added, "I feel pretty good to have this be our senior year that we are going back. It's what we've been working for."
The third-place region finish forced Bremen to travel for the first two rounds of the tournament, which is actually where Pointer prefers it to play. The Lady Blue Devil coach likes for her players to get out of their comfort zone a little bit and noted the team has a knack for being able to get off the bus and play.
Pointer started Wednesday night's final practice a little later so it would end for the team under the lights of its home field. Then the players will go to bed in their own homes before making the drive in the morning.
"At this point, you've got to just put them on the field and let them play. We've gone over just about everything I know to go over — gone over every situation that can happen or that we struggle with and it's their time. They'll shine. They'll get down there and I think they're going to be OK. They're going to see the best teams they've ever seen as this team and they're going to come out swinging. I have no doubt about that," Pointer said.
Success doesn't always come on the field, but it can also come in who you know. With seven other teams playing in the bracket, it is impossible to know which teams you will be playing. That can make getting scouting reports hard. It just so happened that Pointer recently got in touch with her former coach at the University of West Georgia, who now coaches at Pierce County. During the season, coach Bobbie Spires' squad faced three of the seven other teams — Vidalia, Bacon County and Bremen's first opponent Jeff Davis.
While they know they will face Jeff Davis (23-13) in the opening game today at 2:30 p.m., each game is equally important.
"You got to keep winning. You can't afford to get into the loser's bracket. There is no other tournament, there is no next weekend, we can't go back and work on anything. The way I approach it is everything is the championship game. You have to be your best the whole time. If something bad happens, then we fix it and we have to recover. Everybody is going to be playing to that level and we can't sell ourselves short," Pointer said.