Truman senior pitcher Paige Parker and Blue Springs South senior outfielder Madi Giles have been named to the Missouri High School Fastpitch Coaches Association all-state softball first team, while Blue Springs junior pitcher Alexis Reid was named to the second team.
In addition to Parker, Reid and Giles, Blue Springs senior shortstop Tylin Stephens was named to the Region 4 first team. Junior catcher Darian Frost and senior first baseman Morgan McMahan from Blue Springs, sophomore second baseman Julia Woelbel from South and senior shortstop Katy Divers from Fort Osage were named to the Region 4 second team.
Parker, who last week signed her letter of intent to continue her softball career at Oklahoma, guided Truman to a Class 4 state runner-up finish as a freshman 2010, a state championship in 2012 and a state quarterfinal berth this season. Her last game was a 1-0 loss against eventual state champion Lee’s Summit in which she struck out nine and yielded one hit and an unearned run.
She finished her senior campaign 23-2 in the circle with a 0.25 ERA (11 total runs) and 342 strikeouts in 166 innings. Her 1,348 career strikeouts are a state record.
At the plate she batted .600 with nine home runs, six doubles, 33 RBIs and 29 walks. Truman’s last three tournament foes intentionally walked Parker in all 12 at-bats, giving her a state-record 95 career walks.
“Winning the state championship my junior was a great thing, and not just winning, but the memories I had with teammates that year,” Parker said. “All four years I had the best teammates and coaches I could ask for. No one can take those away from us. It was a great four years I got to spend with coaches and teammates, and not only were they teammates – they were my friends.”
Truman (28-4) coach Amy Temples said the task of replacing Parker and five senior teammates was on her mind even as this past season played out.
“It’s not a recent thought I’ve had ... just with the depth of kids we lose, Paige included,” she said. “I already miss them.”
Temples called Parker a once-in-a-lifetime player, and not just for her in-game accomplishments.
“Just physically, as an athlete, she’s just so dominant offensively and defensively,” she said. “All around she’s one of the best kids I’ve ever had as a coach.
“I have a young daughter, and she’s the kind of person you want kids to emulate. She has a great ability to be a great teammate. Sometimes players who receive all the accolades she did lose of the fact it’s a team game, and she always gave credit to someone else first. She’s such a humble athlete.”
Giles, who signed to play at NCAA Division II William Jewell, moved from catcher to outfield this year and paced South in all offensive categories, including a .519 batting average (.667 with runners in scoring position), 28 runs scored, 29 RBIs, 15 extra-base hits and 16 stolen bases.
Giles also committed just two errors in the outfield, and her .519 average set a school record.
“She has been a very unselfish player the last three years by catching when her primary position is outfield,” South coach Kristi Williams said. “We were finally able to get her in the outfield this year and let her show what she can do.”
Outside of Lee’s Summit’s Emily Robinson, Reid was the only pitcher to get the upper hand on Parker this year. The Wildcat junior recorded a 21-4 mark in the circle, with a 1.20 ERA and 192 strikeouts in 157 innings, helping Blue Springs to a 23-4 record and the Suburban Big Six title. At the plate she batted .333, with 17 of her 28 hits going for extra bases, and knocked in 27 runs.