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2013 East Texas Softball Preview: Teams + Players to Watch

Henderson senior pitcher Tiarra Davis, a University of Texas signee. (Courtesy Photo)

Softball may not get quite the publicity some of the other sports in East Texas do, but that’s not because of a void in talent.

The area boasts three major Division I signees set to take to the diamond this spring.

First, there’s Lufkin Hudson senior pitcher Kelsee Selman, an LSU signee who guided Hudson to the Class 3A state championship over Henderson last year.

Speaking of Henderson, the Lady Lions welcome back senior pitcher Tiarra Davis, who signed with perennial softball power Texas back in November.

And then there’s Rusk senior Sydney Littlejohn, who will be taking her talents to defending national champion Alabama next season.

The softball season gets under way Monday, and here’s a look at some of the teams and players to watch this spring.

TEAMS TO WATCH

Class 4A

Hallsville
Head Coach: Pat Eitel
2012 Record: 29-4 (Class 4A regional quarterfinalists)

Key Returners

  • Cassidy Ferrill, C/P, Soph. (.643, 1 HR, 5 2Bs, 3 3Bs; 4-0, 1.71 ERA, 38 Ks; 4-0, 1.71 ERA, 38 Ks)
  • Lindsey Vasquez, SS, Sr. (.417, 20 SBs, .478 on-base percentage)
  • Nicole Linton, P/OF, Jr. (.361, 21 RBIs; 6-1, 2.50 ERA)

 

Nacogdoches
Head Coach: Clarence McMichael
2012 Record: 26-8 (Class 4A area finalists)

Key Returners

  • Kylie Murdock, P, Soph. (19-5, 1.41 ERA, 178 Ks, 128.2 IP; .382, 14 RBIs)
  • Ki’Audra Hayter, INF, Soph. (.455, 2 HRs, 29 RBIs, 21 SBs)
  • Alex Mayfield, INF, Sr. (.488, 2 HRs, 21 RBIs, 35 SBs)

 

Lufkin Hudson pitcher Kelsee Selman has signed with LSU. She is a big reason why defending Class 3A state champion Lufkin Hudson is ranked No. 1 to begin the season. (Courtesy, KTRE)

Class 3A

Lufkin Hudson
Head Coach: Jimmy Eby
2012 Record: 36-5 (Class 3A state champions)

Key Returners

  • Kelsee Selman, P, Sr. (36-3, 0.62 ERA, 446 Ks, 246.2 IP; .361, 8 HRs, 38 RBIs, 12 2Bs; signed with LSU)
  • Madison Selman, INF/OF, Jr. (.404, 4 HRs, 41 RBIs, 11 2Bs, 4 3Bs)
  • Kaylee Parker, OF/P, Jr. (.324, 5 HRs, 26 RBIs, 10 2Bs, 2 3Bs)

 

Henderson
Head Coach: J.J. Freeman
2012 Record: 30-9 (Class 3A state finalists)

Key Returners

  • Tiarra Davis, P., Sr. (19-7, 1.76 ERA, 207 Ks, 170 IP; signed with Texas)
  • Karley Free, 2B, Soph. (.316, 1 HR, 27 RBIs, 12 2Bs, 1 3B)
  • Kami McCaw, P, Jr. (9-2, 2.43 ERA, 70 Ks)

 

Mineola
Head Coach: Jana Nance
2012 Record: 32-2 (Class 2A state semifinalists)

Key Returners

  • Rikkilyn Hass, P, Jr. (20-2 record last year)
  • Ali Galaz, OF, Sr. (.481 batting average)
  • Jade Green, INF, Soph. (.478 batting average)

 

Class 2A

Harmony
Head Coach: Shea Parker
2012 Record: 26-9 (Class 2A regional quarterfinalists)

Key Returners

  • Courtney Matulis, P/INF, Sr. (12-2, 1.83 ERA, 90 Ks, 103 IP; .316, 14 RBIs, 4 2Bs 3 3Bs)
  • McKenna Thomas, P/INF, Jr. (7-1, 0.98 ERA, 45 Ks, 43 IP; .252, 22 RBIs, 3 2Bs, 2 3Bs)
  • Keirston Seahorn, C/INF, Sr. (.353, 2 HRs, 23 RBIs, 7 2Bs)

 

Sabine
Head Coach: Mark Comfort
2012 Record: 20-14 (Class 2A regional quarterfinalists)

Key Returners

  • Tylia Sylestine, INF, Jr. (.600, 2 HRs, 32 RBIs, 18 2Bs, 3 3Bs, 49 runs scored)
  • Kasie Bell, Jr. (.344, 1 HR, 30 RBIs, 4 2Bs, 18 runs scored)

 

Tatum
Head Coach: Melissa Burrow
2012 Record: 20-9 (Class 2A area finalists)

Key Returners

  • Morgan Dison, INF, Sr. (.533 batting average, 14 RBIs, 8 SBs, .600 on-base percentage; signed with Northeast Texas CC)
  • Kasadi Hodges, C, Jr. (.410, 22 RBIs)

 

Troup
Head Coach: Sam Weeks
2012 Record: 30-8 (Class 2A regional semifinalists)

Key Returners

  • Katelyn Standley, C, Sr. (.602, 5 HRs, 49 RBIs, 21 2Bs, 3 3Bs, 17 SBs; signed with SFA)
  • Lee Ann Lloyd, Soph. (.333, 1 HR, 29 RBIs, 12 2Bs, 4 3Bs)
  • Josee Ross, P, Soph. (10-0, 1.57 ERA, 217 Ks, 174 IP; .357, 27 RBIs, 10 2Bs, 2 3Bs)

 

Class A

Beckville
Head Coach: N/A
2012 Record: 28-4 (Class A regional finalists)

Key Returners

  • Taylor Lindsay, INF, Jr. (.620, 4 HRs, 27 RBIs, 10 2B, 7 3Bs, 59 SBs)
  • Montana Searcy, OF, Sr. (.505, 1 HR, 35 RBIs, 2 2Bs, 9 3Bs, 26 SBs)

 

Rusk pitcher Sydney Littlejohn has signed with defending national champion Alabama. (Courtesy Photo)

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Tiarra Davis, P, Sr., Henderson (signed w/Texas)

  • 2012 stats: 19-7, 1.76 ERA, 207 Ks, 170 IP

 

Cassidy Ferrill, C/P, Soph., Hallsville

  • 2012 stats: .643, 1 HR, 5 2Bs, 3 3Bs; 4-0, 1.71 ERA, 38 Ks; 4-0, 1.71 ERA, 38 Ks

 

Katie Hickey, P, Sr., Gladewater

  • 2012 stats: 22-8, 1.30 ERA, 199 Ks, 26 BBs, 184 IP

 

Taylor Lindsay, SS, Jr., Beckville

  • 2012 stats: .620, 4 HRs, 27 RBIs, 10 2B, 7 3Bs, 59 SBs

 

Sydney Littlejohn, P, Sr., Rusk (signed w/Alabama)

  • 2012 stats: 257 Ks

 

Mackenzie Robinson, P, Sr., Carthage

  • 2012 stats: 19-11, 1.72 ERA, 91 Ks; .433, 5 HRs, 42 RBIs, 14 2Bs, 5 3Bs

 

Kelsee Selman, P, Sr., Lufkin Hudson (signed w/LSU)

  • 2012 stats: 36-3, 0.62 ERA, 446 Ks, 246.2 IP; .361, 8 HRs, 38 RBIs, 12 2Bs

 

Katelyn Standley, C, Sr., Troup (signed w/SFA)

  • 2012 stats: .602, 5 HRs, 49 RBIs, 21 2Bs, 3 3Bs, 17 SBs

 

Tylia Sylestine, 3B, Jr., Sabine

  • 2012 stats: .600, 2 HRs, 32 RBIs, 18 2Bs, 3 3Bs, 49 runs scored

 

Ashlyn White, UTL, Sr., Spring Hill

  • 2012 stats: .338, 8 HRs, 30 RBIs, 8 2Bs, 31 runs scored; 8-8, 101 Ks

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