The Hartfield Girls Softball team came ready to compete for the State Title on Saturday, October 9th and left the field as winners of the 6A Fast Pitch State Championship! Led by head coach, Julie McKinney, the girls pulled out victorious in game three with a final score of 3-2.
Our girls showed hard work and dedication throughout the entire season and it was such a special time watching their hard work pay off!
When asked about the team’s confidence going into the championship tournament, Coach Mckinney states “After we took Parklane to 7 innings in the winner's bracket of the State Tournament and played well, we were pretty confident we had a shot at a Championship. This team played with such poise all year but particularly down the stretch, competed every pitch, showed out at home in game 2, and stormed into Parklane Game 3 with confidence and the mission to finish it. As Coach Todd Aultman stated: "We could sense the pressure mounting on Parklane and our confidence continued to build as each inning passed. Our circle competed, we made routine plays and executed the little things. Players completely bought into the process and climbed that mountain to a championship." We are incredibly proud of our girls.
Game one and two came with so many different emotions, but during game three, Mckinney expressed the anticipation about the moment the team had a feeling this could be the game that wins it all. “It was probably not until the 8th inning when Amberly Aultman executed the bunt perfectly to advance the runner and she was safe at first. Emotions erupted and that’s when I knew we were one step closer to the title.”
As far as seasons go, this team competed with an incredible season record: 26-8-1. This team also set many new school records including the following:
Most wins in program history,
Most HRS in a single season at 22.
Most Home Runs by a player, Ma'Nia Womack at 14.
Most players to ever hit home runs in a season at 5.
(Emma Moore, Ajah Mills, Faith Tillery, ManIa Womack, and Raegan Huber).
First-ever Home Runs in Junior Varsity / Paisley Owens (3) and Shamya Williams (1)
New Program Record of 4 consecutive trips to the Overall State Tournament
First-ever softball Championship
First 6A title for Hartfield Academy
The powerhouse team also celebrates the achievement of senior, Emma Moore, who was selected for the MAIS All-Star Award and represented Hartfield well during the MAIS All-Star Game.
A special congratulations is due to our dedicated seniors! Amberly Aultman and Ashlyn Willis have been with the team since 7th grade. Emma Moore and Hallie Martin both joined the team in 9th grade. These seniors earned this well-deserved title!
Head Coach, Julie McKinney, is extremely proud of her team. “The Senior leadership was outstanding from our first workout in February until the final out of the championship. The tone was set early and every teammate stepped up and followed their lead. Internal competition was huge for us all season long, but this team created a fun, positive atmosphere of pushing one another to be their best. Our coaching staff challenged the team to trust the process, be disciplined in the approach, execute the fundamentals, and believe in the possibility of a State Championship. Our strength was one another; all 18 players, 4 coaches, the good Lord, and every single family cheering us on were vital to our team's success.”