Exclusive company for LHS softball team

Published 8:33 pm Monday, October 21, 2019


Daily News

The Class AAAA state softball playoffs began with 32 teams, and the eight surviving teams will gather in Columbus this week for the state finals.

One of those teams is LaGrange High, which has beaten Denmark and Shaw to reach the state finals for the first time since 2004.

LaGrange’s first opponent in the double-elimination state finals is Heritage-Catoosa, and those two teams will meet at the South Commons Softball Complex on Thursday at 6 p.m.

If LaGrange wins that game, it will play either Madison County or Northside-Columbus on Friday at 10 a.m.

If LaGrange loses to Heritage, it will play the loser of the game between Madison County and Northside-Columbus on Friday at 2 p.m.

LaGrange would play again on Friday if it is still alive, and the tournament wraps up on Saturday when a champion will be crowned.

For LaGrange, it has already been a special season.

LaGrange (24-11), after finishing second in Region 5-AAAA to Central-Carroll, was pushed to the limit in the first round of the state playoffs against Denmark.

The teams split the first two games, and LaGrange won the series with a 9-2 victory in game two.

There was no suspense in the second round, with LaGrange overwhelming Shaw 9-1 and 9-0 to earn its first trip to the state finals in 15 years.

“We’ve been talking about that every year that I’ve played here, getting to Columbus,” said third baseman Kirsten Williams, one of six juniors on the team.

LaGrange’s first opponent in Columbus will be a tough one.

Heritage-Catoosa (25-6) won the Region 6-AAAA championship with a 12-0 record, and it swept St. Pius X and Eastside in the first two rounds of the state playoffs.

Against Eastside, Heritage won the first game 1-0 in nine innings before completing the sweep with a 2-0 victory.

Junior pitcher Rachel Gibson has been on the mound for most of Heritage’s games this season, and she has been nearly untouchable.

Gibson is 19-4 with a 1.04 earned run average, and she has 254 strikeouts in 134.2 innings.

LaGrange has an ace pitcher of its own in junior Camden Smith, who is 18-4 with a 2.11 ERA with 199 strikeouts in 166 innings.


WHEN: Thursday through Saturday

WHERE: South Commons Complex in Columbus

WHO: LaGrange, Heritage-Catoosa, Madison County, Northside-Columbus, Lafayette, Central-Carroll, Oconee County and Marist

FORMAT: Double-elimination tournament

FIRST-ROUND GAMES: Madison vs. Northside-Columbus; Heritage-Catoosa vs. LaGrange; Lafayette vs. Central-Carroll; Oconee County vs. Marist