Area Softball
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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Player of the Year

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    Sidney Hooper
    Photo by Tim Barber.
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Sidney Hooper

The sophomore pitcher helped Walker Valley to a second-place finish in the District 5-AAA regular-season standings. Its only league losses were to district champion and eventual state runner-up Soddy-Daisy.

Hooper played in all 33 games for the Lady Mustangs, pitching in 27. Two of her pitching victories came against long-standing power Ooltewah, although a loss to the Lady Owls helped cut short their postseason run.

Hooper had a 16-7 pitching record and a 1.37 ERA. She pitched 148 2/3 innings and allowed 108 hits and 26 walks while striking out 141. She batted .351 with five home runs, 60 total bases and 25 runs driven in. She also stole six bases and scored 26 runs.

“She had an amazing season,” Walker Valley coach Lauren Limburg said. “She’s a great athlete and a great kid. She’s definitely a team player and worked hard. She stepped it up against our tougher opponents. When we played the big teams, she played big.”

Coach of the Year

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    Chris Thomas
    Photo by Tim Barber.
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Chris Thomas

Thomas guided Marion County to the program’s second state-tournament berth in his first season as head coach. He credited predecessor Thomas Long for the program being in such good standing.

Marion County won the District 6-A regular season and tournament, something Thomas said he thought early on could be done if the players “took care of business.” After finishing runner-up to Grace Academy in the Region 3 tournament, Marion County avenged the previous year’s state-sectional loss at Friendship Christian.

The Lady Warriors’ fourth-place finish at the Spring Fling is the best in school history. The 1993 team went 0-2 at the state tournament.

“I’m really proud of the girls,” said Thomas, who was assisted by Larry Richards and Sarah Ziegler. “They started out to do something and accomplished the one goal. They just came up short on the other.”

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    Laurel Allen
    Photo by Tim Barber.
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Laurel Allen

Walker Valley

Senior outfielder

The Lee signee hit .327 with seven homers and 31 RBIs, had 12 steals and scored 33 runs.

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    Brooke Baxter
    Photo by Tim Barber.
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Brooke Baxter

Marion County

Sophomore outfielder

She batted .427 and led her team with 22 walks, 28 stolen bases and 56 runs scored.

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    Morgan Boggess
    Photo by Jake Daniels.
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Morgan Boggess

Meigs County

Freshman pitcher

She was 19-6 with a 2.30 ERA and 147 strikeouts and hit .419 with 10 homers and 39 RBIs.

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    Taylor Brown
    Photo by Tim Barber.
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Taylor Brown

Marion County

Junior outfielder

She hit .496 with seven homers, 21 doubles and 50 RBIs, had eight steals and scored 51 runs.

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    Paige Case
    Photo by Tim Barber.
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Paige Case

South Pittsburg

Senior infielder

The class valedictorian batted .479, stole 12 bases, scored 21 runs and drove in 20.

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    Emily Dagnan
    Photo by Tim Barber.
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Emily Dagnan

Sequatchie County

Junior catcher

She batted .360 with three home runs and 31 RBIs, stole five bases and scored 26 runs.

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    Alyssa King
    Photo by Jake Daniels.
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Alyssa King

McMinn County

Sophomore infielder

She batted .412 with 11 home runs and 38 RBIs and had a slugging percentage of .775.

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    Meredith Mitchell
    Photo by Tim Barber.
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Meredith Mitchell

Sequatchie County

Junior utility

She struck out twice, and her .440 average, 65 total bases and 36 runs all were team highs.

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    Kayla Reagan
    Photo by Jake Daniels.
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Kayla Reagan

Bledsoe County

Senior infielder

She hit .440 with a .504 on-base percentage, two homers and 21 RBIs and scored 24 runs.

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    Heather Richards
    Photo by Tim Barber.
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Heather Richards

Marion County

Senior pitcher

She was 16-7 with a 1.60 ERA and 133 strikeouts and hit .408 with four homers and 29 RBIs.

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    Lydia Ritchie
    Photo by Jake Daniels.
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Lydia Ritchie

Bledsoe County

Sophomore pitcher

She was 21-8 with 207 strikeouts and an ERA of 0.86 and batted .436 with two home runs.

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    Sydney Sloan
    Photo by Jake Daniels.
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Sydney Sloan

Polk County

Sophomore infielder

She had a .493 average with three home runs and 13 doubles, drove in 20 runs and scored 20.

Second team

Keli Bruning Marion County Junior Catcher

Chasity Carlton Sequatchie County Senior Infielder

Ashton Condra Whitwell Junior Pitcher

Brooklyn Girdley Sequatchie County Junior Pitcher

Morgan Hidalgo Rhea County Sophomore Outfielder

Caroline Jenkins Polk County Junior Infielder

Rachel Lillard McMinn County Sophomore Infielder

Kacie McClendon Marion County Senior Utility

Lynsey Million Meigs County Senior Outfielder

Ashley Moffitt Sequatchie County Freshman Outfielder

Kayla Sewell Walker Valley Senior Infielder

Kelsey Thomas Marion County Junior Pitcher

Teams of the year

1-- MARION COUNTY (36-10)

The District 6-A champion Lady Warriors ended up fourth in the state. The school’s only other softball team to advance to the state tournament went 0-2 in 1993.

2-- BLEDSOE COUNTY (28-13)

The District 7-AA regular-season winner and Region 4 champion was the first female sports team in school history to earn its way to a state tournament

3-- MEIGS COUNTY (25-12)

The Lady Tigers graduated seven starters off last year’s Class AA state-tournament team yet went unbeaten against District 5 opponents and got to a state sectional.