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By Dan Perrine
For the Record 

Lady Bobcats hope to clinch district title


Last updated 4/17/2023 at 10:33am

Charlee Sanches pitched well in two of the Orangefield wins last week and hit a homerun in one game while Harleigh Rawls hit a homer in all three games for the Lady Bobcats

Orangefield survived the three game gauntlet when it recently played the three other leaders in the District 22-3A softball standings over an eight-day period and now the Lady Bobcats are sitting in the catbird seat of first place. The Lady Bobcats (11-2) completed the trifecta this past week winning three games in four days and can claim the district championship with a win in their final game with Hardin.

Orangefield beat Buna 4-3 in the earlier meeting between the two teams played at Orangefield in March. The Lady Bobcats went to Buna on Friday, April 14, and took a big step closer to clinching the district title with a 4-0 win over the Lady Cougars.

Lady Bobcat pitcher Abigail Curphey threw a complete game shutout to earn the victory. Curphey surrendered three hits, no walks, and struck out five in a gem of a pitching performance for Orangefield.

Senior Harleigh Rawls is on a tear at the plate for the Lady Bobcats. Rawls went three for four which included a homerun in her third straight game and she scored two runs.

The Becker sisters Hallee and Paris combined for a pair of hits. Charlee Sanches added two hits and drove in a run while Rylee Dougay had a hit and knocked in a run for Orangefield.

The Lady Bobcats' bats were booming in their two previous games last week. Orangefield blasted the Warren Lady Warriors and the East Chambers Lady Bucs by scores of 16-1 and 16-0 respectfully on Tuesday and Wednesday. The game with East Chambers played at Orangefield only lasted three innings and the game at Warren was shortened to five innings both because of the fifteen-run rule.

Orangefield Coach Rebekah Ragsdale used two pitchers in each of the two games. Abigail Curphey started the games and Charlee Sanches finished in the circle for the Lady Bobcats.

Curphey pitched a total of four innings allowing two hits, no runs, and striking out six. Sanches was very effective too yielding just one run in her four innings of work while striking out seven opposing batters.

There were hitting stars throughout the Lady Bobcat lineup. Harleigh Rawls hit a homerun in both games and drove in seven runs. Alysen Vincent drove in five runs against Warren and two against East Chambers. Sanches smashed a homerun in the game with the Lady Bucs.

Lost in all the offense and great pitching was solid fielding by Orangefield. The Lady Bobcats made no errors in the two games, and left fielder Paris Becker made a sensational running catch of a fly ball to rob an East Chambers hitter of extra bases.

Needing to win the last game on the schedule to clinch a district championship has Coach Rebekah Ragsdale proud of her Lady Bobcats. "We've set ourselves up well, and we've set ourselves up for success, a championship is doable at this point. I think at this point where we are at in our heads is it's doable and it's right there like almost we can taste it," Ragsdale described.

A district championship will be icing on the cake for the Orangefield Lady Bobcats as they are definitely in the playoffs in their first season having moved down from Class 4A to be one of the biggest schools in Class 3A. Coach Ragsdale analyzed, "We're going to have a target on our back and every game is going to be tough from here on out."

The Orangefield Lady Bobcats played their final game of the regular season on Tuesday, April 18, at Paul Cormier Field against the Hardin Lady Hornets. The game was Senior and Youth Night at Orangefield. Playoff details for the Lady Bobcats will be forthcoming probably next week.


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