High school softball players selected to All-State teams | Local sports


Nine local high school softball players were named All-State players in their respective classifications by the South Carolina Coaches Association of Women's Sports.

Ayla Holmes and LeAnn Gilbert of North Augusta made the Class AAAA team; Zoey Owens of Fox Creek, Leigh Anne Strock of Strom Thurmond and Jaidyn Devore and BreAnna Buckmon of Barnwell were selected for Class AA; and Williston-Elkos Hailey O'Neal and Wagener-Salley duo Allie Davis and Kylee Hooker were selected to Class A.

Holmes, a freshman, was the Region 4-AAAA champion Jackets' main offensive threat. Heading into Thursday night's Class AAAA Upper State semifinal at York, Holmes was batting .527 with seven doubles, five home runs, 28 RBI and 22 runs scored.

Gilbert, a senior, has led the Jackets in the circle while providing a reliable hitter. Entering Thursday night, she was batting .427 with four doubles, 11 RBI and 20 runs scored, and as a pitcher she had a record of 15-1 with a 2.61 ERA in 22 appearances.

Owens, a senior, led the Predators as they reached the Class AA District 1 championship. She batted .473 with 11 doubles, two triples, 24 RBI and 23 runs scored.

Strock, a sophomore, is a repeat selection from last year. She posted a .468 batting average with three doubles, a triple, 26 RBI and 28 runs scored en route to Friday's Class AA Upper State championship at Gray Collegiate.

Devore, a junior, is also a returnee to the all-state team. She batted .563 with 10 doubles, three triples, one home run, 28 RBI and 31 runs scored, and in the circle she went 16-3 with a 0.99 ERA, throwing five no-hitters and two perfect games.

Buckmon, a senior, hit .375 with three doubles, two triples, 17 RBI and 30 runs scored as she and Devore led the Warhorses to the Region 6-AA title and a berth in the District 6 championship. She was also selected for the North-South All-Star Games.

O'Neal, a sophomore, was the star of a record-setting offense between Williston and Elko. The Blue Devils set new program highs in batting average, runs scored and home runs, and O'Neal provided a big blow as the Blue Devils won 15 games, finished second in Region 4-A and won the Class A Reached District 2 Championship.