Over the course of the 2018-19 season, the Scioto County landscape has seen a litany of players obtain awards over the All-SOC and All-State landscapes.
On Friday afternoon, a grand total of 38 Scioto County hands racked up All-District accolades, with the hands inside the county sweeping the overall proceedings as Wheelersburg’s Boo Sturgill won Division III Player of the Year honors while Clay’s Shaelyn Vassar and Valley’s Faith Brown earned Division IV Co-Player of the Year honors. Teresa Ruby and Jason Gearheart, who went a combined 48-7 with a regional appearance apiece, added in Division III and Division IV Coach of the Year honors as Scioto County swept the main district awards for 2018.
Sturgill, who hit nine home runs in 2018, led the way for the Lady Pirates as the freshman three-hole hitter proved to be a force all season long, as evidenced by her four home runs over the first four games of her high school career. Christen Risner, an electric leadoff hitter who is arguably the best baserunner in Scioto County, joined her fellow teammate on the first team list.
Laney Eller, who completes a promising freshman middle infield duo and was huge along with Sturgill, earned second team accolades, while Sarah Claxon added honorable mention billing to complete the Wheelersburg effort.
The Lady Falcons’ top of the order continued to rake in the accolades as the red-hot hitting Brittani Wolfenbarker and the efforts of three-hole hitter and ace pitcher Zoe Doll allowed the duo to obtain first team honors. Emily Shoemaker, a top-of-the-order sparkplug, and Hannah Tolle, a cleanup hitter in the middle of the order, rounded out the efforts for Minford.
A couple of college commitments were joined by two additional senior teammates on the All-District list as the multi-talented efforts of Shawnee State signee MaKayla White and a breakout year from Sammy Tatman landed the duo on the second team list, while Kentucky Christian University signee Taylor Coleman and rock-solid outfielding hand Madison Cochran added to the fun with their honorable mention accolades.
Two of the most underrated players in the entire Southeast District got their well-deserved accolades as pitcher and middle-of-the-order standout Laiken Rice obtained first team honors for the Lady Mohawks while Addi Newman used her stellar speed and batting average to garner second team accolades. Promising youngsters Jaclyn Burchett and Alexis Lute garnered honorable mention accolades for a unit that will return all four players in 2018.
Jacqueline Bautista, an infielder who averaged well over .400 at the plate, was Portsmouth’s lone representative on the unit in 2018.
The Lady Panthers, who put together a wonderful effort against Strasburg-Franklin in 15 innings before falling by a 5-4 tally, put Vassar — who led the team in batting average, stolen bases, and overall hit streak — on the first team along with Julia Swain, who added in a whale of a performance by throwing 12 complete innings in relief against the eventual Division IV State Champions.
Behind Vassar — the co-POY — and Swain, the efforts of Swain’s fellow pitching hand, Hannah Oliver, and Jensen Warnock, who put together two home runs in a monster performance against Strasburg-Franklin, added on their own marks on the team with second team accolades. Three of the four players — with the exception of Swain, who graduated and will play with the Shawnee State softball program next season — will be back.
As with the All-SOC unit, Brown led the way by splitting the D-IV Player of the Year honors with Vassar. The senior threw every pitch in every inning of every game en route to claiming top billing in both settings.
Fellow Shawnee State University signee Margaret Caldwell, an electric leadoff hitter and center fielder, earned second team billing, while Marissa Markins and Kirbi Sommers — the former being an SSU signee as well — obtained All-District Honorable Mention accolades.
Cassie Schaefer, an outstanding ace pitcher and middle-of-the-order hitter, along with the promising talents that cleanup hitting and first base hand Claire Dettwiller brought to the table allowed the pair to obtain first team accolades. The electric abilities of one and two-hole hitters Molly Hoover and Isabel Cassidy put the duo on the second team unit. All but Hoover will be back next season.
Like Notre Dame, the efforts of ace pitcher Gwen Messer were plenty enough to put the freshman on the first team, while Baylee Cox added in honorable mention biliing for the Lady Jeeps.
As with most of the SOC I units on the list, the Lady ‘Cats got their ace pitcher the highest billing as Ava Jenkins, who also doubles as a shortstop, garnered second team honors. Two-hole hitter Cass Kellogg and middle-of-the-order hitters Kerston Sparks and Rachael Cline each nabbed honorable mention accolades.
The Lady Tigers, who finished with a solid 7-7 record in SOC I action, put the efforts of Peyton Helphinstine, an excellent two-way player who produced in the cleanup spot and played in center field for New Boston, on the first team, while the team’s primary pitching hand, Taylen Hickman, obtained second team honors. Lexus Oiler added in honorable mention accolades after displaying a solid glove in the infield for New Boston.
Victoria Fannin, an impressive freshman bat in the middle of the order, led the Lady Tartans’ effort with honorable mention accolades.
Reach Kevin Colley at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930 OR on Twitter @KColleyPDT