A travel softball team with players from different parts of South Louisiana capped off a 72-win year with a national championship on July 14th.
The Lady Rippers 09 went 8-0 on the way to winning the 12U Youth Nationals Softball Tournament in Louisville, Kentucky.
The Lady Rippers outscored their opponents 88-9, including an 8-0 win in the championship game over Turnin2 Mortinsen from Holly, Michigan.
“It has been awesome since the first weekend (this season),” said coach Michelle Clement. “You’d think they’ve been playing together forever. They’ve been put in tough situations like playing tough teams and playing up in 14U and they never backed down.”
The team consists of players from Lutcher(3), Edgard, Walker(3), Central, Hammond and Pointe Coupee(3).
The Lady Rippers won five other tournaments this year, including the United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA) Louisiana state championship.
They won five games in pool play to earn the No. 1 seed heading into bracket play. After a bye in the first round, they beat Motown Diamonds 9-1, and the Hampton Roads Warriors 10-1 to get to the championship game.
“They weren’t nervous one bit,” Clement said of her team. “It was a lot of excitement after it was over. The success comes a lot from the individual kids and their families. They work individually and their parents make it easier on us as coaches.”
As a team, the Lady Rippers hit .466 in the tournament with 95 hits in 204 at-bats. The four pitchers combined to give up only 20 hits with 69 strikeouts and 13 walks. They faced 151 batters and threw a pair of no-hitters.
Kayme Bonin led the team with a .600 average in the eight games. Addison Davis tossed 16 innings, allowing 12 hits with one walk and 28 strikeouts.
Three players also took home skill competition titles. Edyn Mannino won the pop time for catchers at 1.8. seconds. Davis earned fastest pitch velocity at 61 mph. Alexis Pitre won the homerun derby with eight homers.
Clement said winning the Kentucky tournament was a goal that team had for several months.
“I’m super proud of the girls,” she said. “We issued them a challenge in the spring to get to Kentucky in win. They accomplished the Kentucky challenge.”
- Kayme Bonin
- Alexis Pitre
- Brynlee Pitre
- Edyn Mannino
- Ella Doucet
- Celie Chauvin
- Addison Davis
- Julianne Armand
- Aubrey Madere
- Reece Clement
- Blair Clement
- Michelle Clement
- Kenny Clement
- Ronnie Madere