Following a successful regular season campaign, the 17-7 Hays Rebel softball team heads into postseason play and is expecting a deep run.
Hays officially capped off its district season with a loss Monday to the Vista Ridge Rangers in a tiebreaker game for second place in 25-6A. As a result of the loss, which dropped the Rebels to third in the district standings, Hays will open postseason play with a one-game playoff against San Antonio Madison Friday at 7 p.m. at Cibolo Steele High.
The Rebels could have easily been 9-1 in district play as several of those district losses were close, extra inning games. Head coach Lisa Cone felt the hard-fought wins will help her squad in the playoffs.
“We lost some really close games. We played great games, and I feel like we’ve put ourselves in a good place to win a lot of games in the playoffs.”
Several Rebels had successful regular season campaigns, with eight different players finishing with a batting average over .300.
Junior Maxine Valdez led the team with 23 RBIs and six home runs. Junior Bri Rodriguez was the leader in hits (29) and runs scored (19). As the ace of the pitching staff, Valdez finished 14-5 with a 1.12 ERA and notched 188 strikeouts.
Cone has confidence in her team.
“Because we had some competitive games, I feel that will help us and give us some confidence,” Cone said.
Competing through the rigorous 25-6A schedule is what Cone believes could provide a strong backbone for the Rebels as they hit the playoffs.
“I know some of the districts we will be playing are not as strong as ours, so I hope that will pay off. But I do feel like we are playing really good softball right now,” Cone said.
Correction: In our print edition, we incorrectly reported the date of this week’s playoff game between Hays and SA Madison. The story has been updated and corrected. We apologize for the error.