Back in the swing of things

Defending Class 6A State Champions return to action

Choctaw High School Softball had a record season last year as the Lady Yellowjackets rolled through competition to secure the prestigious Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association Class 6A State Championship.
The softball state title was the second in school history as Choctaw finished the year 36-7 overall with wins in 22 of their last 23 games. They claimed the 2015 Conference Championship, 2015 Regional Championship and 2015 State Championship with a 13-game win streak.

Kaylee Abernathy slides into second safe. (Photo by Ryan Horton)

Kaylee Abernathy slides into second safe.
(Photo by Ryan Horton)

Jamie White connects during the home opener vs. Lawton Ike. CHS won, 11-1. (Photo by Ryan Horton)

Jamie White connects during the home opener vs. Lawton Ike. CHS won, 11-1. (Photo by Ryan Horton)

Last season was head coach Lindsey Mudgett’s second year leading CHS and her second time taking the Lady Jackets to the state tournament.
Mudgett’s first year at CHS resulted in a 26-14 overall record and an undefeated run in regional action to secure the school’s first appearance at state since 2009.
CHS also set a record last year when all six graduating softball players signed to play college ball.
Haley Pomplun, Abby Martin, Paige Russell, Allyssa Sievert, Jakayla Whitney and Erica Vessels finished their high school careers.
However, a large group of graduating standouts has left the Lady Jackets with a young roster going into the 2016 season, and those aren’t the only varsity voids to fill as Choctaw reloads for another state tournament appearance.
Choctaw also lost Chenise Delce who would have been a junior this year. Delce was named District Newcomer of the year and Big 10 all Conference Pitcher of the Year as a freshman and then went on to lead Choctaw to the state title throwing two no-hitters in the regional tournament and allowing just five runs and 11 hits as she struck out 19 batters during three state championship games.
However, the Lady Jackets have plenty of potential stars on the roster, and the team knows the commitment required to peak in time to capture a state title.
Choctaw’s roster features seven seniors including Brooke Edwards, Mia Key, Megan McAffrey, Payton Abernathy, Haleigh Scott, Amanda Romero and Kennedy Henry.
Juniors Jamie White, Lillian Harjo, Josie Swafford and Julie Weatherly will add some experience to the lineup.
Returning catcher Lainee Brown is now a sophomore and expected to be a key component, while sophomore Tatem Verel and freshman Lyrissa Burk will have their chance on the pitcher’s mound.
Sophomore Jaidyn Stevens, and freshmen Kaylee Abernathy, Tiffany Paul and Avery Clark are also contributing to the varsity effort. Assisting Mudgett will once again be Brian Spradlin and Travis Beckel, while Megan DeQuasie will serve as the team manager.

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