Colleyville Heritage’s softball program could only wait it out this week. The Lady Panthers (13-9, 6-6 in District 7-6A) finished their regular season with a 6-0 victory over Richland this past Saturday.
But they trailed Haltom for fourth place. The Lady Buffalos were 6-5 before playing their regular season finale against Coppell on Monday. If Haltom won, then it would claim the final playoff spot and Colleyville Heritage would be out. If Coppell won, it would force a tie. Colleyville Heritage and Haltom had settled for a playoff play-in game Tuesday at Grapevine.
With Colleyville Heritage playing only 22 games, the program did not have the amount of playing time needed to put a lineup together that head coach Allison Conway could run out to the field on a game-in, game-out basis. Weather wiped out all three tournaments (12 games) the Lady Panthers were scheduled to play.
“We just could not get a true sense of the magic connection out there,” Conway said. “The weather didn’t help, but that’s not an excuse, either. But the girls gave us everything they had.”
Along with the 4-3 loss to Carroll in the bottom of the seventh on April 20, Conway said he felt that there were four games that this team probably could have won had it not been for a bad break here or there. The toughest was the 7-6 loss to Coppell on March 27. The Lady Panthers blew a 6-2 lead in the late innings.
“That one sticks with me more than anything else,” Conway said.
Overall, Conway was pretty pleased with the way senior pitchers Rebecca Parks and Fallon Dean handled things. Dean would have pitched Tuesday. Meanwhile, freshman third baseman Maggie Black developed as a hitter with two home runs. Junior catcher Shelby Bourland continued to serve as one of the top players for this team.
The Lady Mustangs (12-11, 7-4 in District 6-5A) reached their goal of clinching a playoff berth. While they struggled with the district’s top teams in Birdville and Lake Dallas, they were able to handle the weaker Fort Worth teams.
The regular season concluded on Tuesday against Fort Worth Eastern Hills. Everything pointed to Grapevine, the district’s third seed, meeting to White Settlement Brewer, the 5-5A second seed, in the Class 5A Region I bi-district round.
“Last year, we started off really slow and weren’t very good,” head coach Steve Bottoms said. “We made progress and we wanted to go forward and take the next step.”
Bottoms had to shift some things with this team because he lost the left side out of the infield. Shortstop Sally Delgado moved to Colleyville Heritage, while third baseman Rachil Gossett suffered a broken leg and was lost for the season.
However, this team rallied when sophomore outfielder Heather Haggard moved to shortstop and freshmen Abby Haugh and Sydney Kaai shared playing third base. Haugh enjoyed a strong offensive season, batting .490. Her sister, catcher Cynthia Haugh, has owned the batter’s box, hitting .607 with four home runs and 36 RBIs.
Bottoms split the pitching duties between Kaai, Abby Haugh, Alyssa Gonzalez and Hannah Maxey. He said wasn’t sure how he would use his pitchers for the postseason but would take this week to decide.