Porter leads Dream Team

Published 6:00 pm Sunday, May 29, 2011

Bogue Chitto’s 2010 state championship Cinderella season,compared to 2011, was just as amazing. The Lady Cats successfullydefended their title by sweeping the West Union Lady Eagles in twogames last weekend. Shortstop Josie Porter played a huge rolethroughout the season, both offensively and defensively, to helpBogue Chitto return to the Promised Land and complete their questto repeat.

For her performance, Porter has been selected the Most ValuablePlayer on The DAILY LEADER’s 2011 All-Area Fastpitch SoftballTeam.

Two more special DAILY LEADER awards went to junior shortstopKierra Collins of Franklin, who was selected Offensive Player ofthe Year; and senior catcher Karla Beth Hux of Enterprise, who wasnamed Defensive Player of the Year.

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Joining them on the All-Area Dream Team are pitchers BriannaBrister of North Pike, Rheagan Welch of Bogue Chitto, Hannah Moakof Enterprise and Kamry Creel of McComb.

Joining Hux at catcher are Breanna McKenzie of North Pike, AdrienneWallace of Bogue Chitto and Macie McQuage of Wesson.

Porter is joined in the infield by Bradi Davis of Bogue Chitto,Haley Ainsworth of West Lincoln, Lauren Wells of North Pike,Allison Hauer of Franklin County, Alli Harris of Lawrence County,Sarah Falvey of Loyd Star and Sarah Ayers of Brookhaven.

The Dream Team’s flex players are McKenzie Rials of Wesson, TaylorNelson of Enterprise, Brittany Bass of Parklane, Latorya Griffin ofFranklin County, Natalie Keene of Brookhaven Academy and ElizabethCliburn of Copiah Academy.

Collins is the leader in designated players selection, along withShelby Mitchell of Lawrence County, Darcy Miller of Bogue Chitto,Maggie Paulk of Parklane, Toy Smith of Bogue Chitto, Laura BethWright of Brookhaven Academy, Meghan Johnson of Copiah Academy andMadeline DeLaughter of Brookhaven.

The Dream Team outfielders are Annie Artigues of McComb, MattieAvants of Bogue Chitto, Marisa Pruski of West Lincoln, DanielleFarnum of McComb, Kayla Byrd of Lawrence County and McKenzie Brockof North Pike.

Bogue Chitto coach Scott Leggett said Porter is an exceptionalathlete both offense and defense. “Josie Porter is a smart hitterand she is very athletic. She has a lot of confidence when shesteps to the plate.

“At shortstop, she is one the best that I have coached. She isfundamentally sound with a great arm and a great glove to go withit.”

Porter’s leadership helped orchestrated the Lady Cats toback-to-back State 1A fastpitch championships at the Freedom RidgePark in Ridgeland. Bogue Chitto became the first team in LincolnCounty to accomplish an amazing goal of winning two state titles infastpitch and the 1A slowpitch crown in a one-year span.

Josie Porter, 5-6 senior right-hander, is a hard-nosed player whowill battle for everything both offensively and defensively.

Porter led the Lady Cats with .500 batting average, whilecollecting 30 RBIs, 10 doubles and 5 triples. Defensively, she wasknown as a cerebral assassin, that most of the opposing teamsfeared. Porter supported a .930 fielding percentage with 67 putoutsand 66 assists.

Porter shared her thoughts on Bogue Chitto’s state title season.”We started off the season slow, but we picked it up and played asa team. When the playoffs started, Darcy Miller returned back tothe lineup and we settled down into our groove,” said Porter.

Porter gives credit to her big sister and her coaches in helpingher become a good ball player. “My big sister (Marley Porter) wasmy biggest helper. She showed me the ropes and kept on encouragingme to do better. Over the years, I continue to keep on learningfrom my mistakes to make myself better. I also give thanks to Godfor giving me the athletic ability to play sports.”

Porter has signed an athletic scholarship to play softball for theCo-Lin Lady Wolves. She plans to pursue a career in the MLT programthat will help her achieve her goal in becoming aveterinarian.

Kierra Collins, a 5-5 junior right-hander, uses a 32-inch bat andswings left-handed. She is a force to be dealt with. Collins is afixture at the shortstop position for Franklin County, batting .574and collecting 33 RBIs.

How did Collins become such a good offensive player? “Practice andbeing mentally as well as physically ready to hit the ball when youstep inside the batter’s box,” said Collins.

Collins described her season as being fun and exciting. “This was afun and exciting year for us as a team. Overall, my best game wasagainst Alexander High in Louisiana. I managed to hit three homeruns in that tournament and we won three games there.”

Franklin County coach Dana Smith said “KeKe Collins is a dangeroushitter. She can hit the ball with power or finesse. Collins has thesmarts to back up her aggressive playing style. We expect to seegreat things from her next year.”

Karla Beth Hux, a 5-3 senior right-hander, sparkled behind theplate for Enterprise. Hux’s .973 fielding percentage was thedefensive anchor in the Lady Jackets spectacular run to theplayoffs.

How did Hux developed into such a good catcher?

“It took a lot of practice. My dad (Kyle Hux) and my coaches kepton pushing and encouraging me to do my best.”

Hux loves to play the catcher position. “I love being in charge ofthe game. I love the feeling of being the catcher as it keeps meinvolved in every play.”

Enterprise coach Charissa Burke said “Karla Beth is awell-deserving player of this award. She has been the catcher forus since the eight grade. She possesses a great attitude for thegame both on the field and off the field. I am very proud of herand all of her accomplishments.”

Brianna Brister, a junior, compiled a 10-5 record for North Pike.At the plate, she batted .241.

Rheagan Welch, a sophomore, posted an 11-1 record for Bogue Chitto.As a batter, she had a .280 average.

Hannah Moak, a freshman, provided the Lady Jackets with a 8-4worksheet. At the plate, she had an .361 batting average.

Kamry Creel, a sophomore, posted an 12-5 record for the McComb LadyTigers who went to the 5A playoffs.

Breanna McKenzie, a sophomore, had a .574 batting average for theNorth Pike Lady Jaguars.

Adrienne Wallace, a sophomore, flourished at catcher spot early inthe season. She batted .404 on the season for the Lady Cats anddrove in 49 runs.

Macie McQuage, a sophomore, batted .408 for Coach Jackie Johnson’sWesson Lady Cobras.

Bradi Davis, a senior, had an .349 average at the plate for BogueChitto.

Haley Ainsworth, a senior, provided great leadership and helped theLady Bears get back into the playoffs. She finished the season withan .554 batting average.

Lauren Wells, a freshmen, is a talented athlete. She compiled an8-2 pitching record for the Lady Jaguars. She also batted an .462at the plate.

Allison Hauer, a senior, recently signed a athletic scholarshipwith East Central. She orchestrated an .479 average for the LadyBulldogs of Franklin County

Alli Harris, a senior, posted a .300 batting average for LawrenceCounty.

Sarah Falvey, a senior, batted .423 for Loyd Star.

Sarah Ayers, a senior, batted .342 for Brookhaven.

McKenzie Rials, a sophomore, posted a 10-5 record for Wesson.

Taylor Nelson, a sophomore, played a big part in the pitchingrotation at Enterprise. She compiled a 6-4 record in the LadyJackets’ magical season.

Brittany Bass, a sophomore, had .405 batting average forParklane.

Latorya Griffin, a sophomore, had a .481 batting average forFranklin County.

Natalie Keene, a sophomore, earned a .583 batting average forBrookhaven Academy.

Elizabeth Cliburn, a junior, brings a lot of talent to the LadyColonels. She batted a .446 on the season.

Shelby Mitchell, a senior, batted .500 for Lawrence County’s LadyCougars.

Darcy Miller, a senior, is a tough individual. She returned to thelineup just before the playoffs. She batted .350 during theplayoffs.

Maggie Paulk, a junior, was a big part in the Lady Pioneersoffensive. She average .415 at the plate.

Toy Smith, a senior, flexed her muscles for the Lady Cats andcompiled an 12-6 worksheet.

Laura Beth Wright, a junior, battled hard offensively forBrookhaven Academy. She batted an .481.

Meghan Johnson, a junior, provided a strong arm for Copiah Academy.She compiled a 18-10 record.

Madeline DeLaughter, a senior, was the power hitter for theBrookhaven Lady Panthers. She had an .320 batting average.

Annie Artigues, a senior, was a force in the outfield. She posted a.436 average at the plate for the McComb Lady Tigers.

Mattie Avants, a freshmen, provided great defense in the Lady Catsmarch to a repeat. She batted a .436 on the season.

Marisa Pruski, a junior, used her quickness and skills to help theLady Bears. She batted .441 at the plate.

Danielle Farnum, a senior, provided leadership for the Lady Tigers.She conducted a .375 batting average.

Kayla Byrd, a senior, used her athletic ability to help theLawrence County Lady Cougars return to the playoffs. She batted a.330 on the season.

McKenzie Brock, a freshmen, showed great potential on the seasonfor the Lady Jaguars. She batted a .580.