Parish softball players make All-District 5-5A
After having their season taken away in 2020, softball players from around the parish were anxious to get back on the field this past season.
It showed. They put forth some terrific performances that resulted in an astounding 29 Ascension softball players making the All-District 5-5A team.
Leading the way with 14 selections was St. Amant.
The defending Class 5A champions had another impressive season as they went 23-2 during the regular season and captured yet another District 5-5A championship.
At one time, the Lady Gators were ranked as the 11th-best team in the country by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association.
St. Amant headed into the Class 5A playoffs as the No. 2 seed. In the first two rounds, the Lady Gators beat Captain Shreve and Alexandria by a combined score of 27-0.
This punched St. Amant’s ticket to the state quarterfinals. There, the Lady Gators hosted No. 7 Pineville, but they were upset at home, ending their quest to win back-to-back state titles.
Highlighting the all-district team for St. Amant were senior shortstop Julia Kramer and sophomore pitcher Addison Jackson. The duo was named District 5-5A Co-MVPs.
Also, Amy Pitre was named the District 5-5A Coach of the Year.
In addition to Kramer and Jackson, six other Lady Gators made the all-district first team.
This included senior catcher Sophie Smith and junior utility player Carmen Dixon. Also, outfielder Aralee Beene made the first team, as well as senior infielder Shelby Whittington.
St. Amant had a duo of freshmen make the first unit with infielder Alix Franklin and designator player Mary Beth Zeller.
Five St. Amant players made the second team. They were: senior pitcher Kaylee Parker, junior outfielder Lauren Crochet, sophomore outfielders Halle Haydel and Alexandra Funes and freshman designator player Samantha Landaiche.
Also, junior Caterina Byars was an honorable-mention selection.
Another parish team that made the Class 5A playoffs was Dutchtown.
The Lady Griffins had a bit of an up-and-down regular season as they finished with a 14-17 record. Still, that was good enough for a runner-up finish in the district and the No. 17 seed in the postseason.
Unfortunately for Dutchtown, its trip to the playoffs ended quickly with a heartbreaking 1-0 loss to Benton.
Outside of St. Amant, Dutchtown had the most selections on the All-District 5-5A team. Eleven Lady Griffins made the squad.
This included a booming seven first-team players.
Leading the charge for Dutchtown was a trio of seniors in infielders Madi Mitchell and Kassidy Hood and outfielder Anna Jones.Junior catcher Brynne Songy and utility player Katelyn Bessonette also made the first team.
In addition, a duo of freshmen pitchers made the first unit. They were Sidney Dunham and Maddie West.
Continuing with the youth movement, freshman infielder Riley Bennett made the second team.
Honorable-mention selections for Dutchtown were juniors Mallory Melancon and Lysia Russell and sophomore Alexa Womack.
East Ascension had a very tough season. The young and inexperienced Lady Spartans failed to win a game in 2021.
But some of their players put forth solid individual performances. As a result, four East Ascension standouts made the All-District 5-5A squad.
Making the first team was freshman outfielder Avery Wheat. Sophomore pitcher Alisha Brown made the second unit.
Senior Raven Turner and junior Alicia Stango were both honorable-mention selections.