FLEMING ISLAND - Ridgeview, St. Johns Country Day School, Middleburg and Oakleaf all landed in the region playoffs to put Clay County softball on the map a second straight year after a Final Four bonanza last year with Clay, Oakleaf and Keystone Heights. Ridgeview and Oakleaf did advance to their respective Final Fours this year.
With the talent flowing freely on the Clay basepaths, the Clay Today SUPER 11 softball picks were considerably difficult to finish, but here goes.
The Clay Today SUPER 11 sports teams are comprised of the top 11 athletes in their respective sports as chosen by the Clay Today sports staff and photographers.
Madisyn Davis, OHS, Senior, P
Madisyn Davis, headed to University of Central Florida next year, was clearly the most dominant pitcher in the north Florida arena, if not the entire Florida arena, but the wispy, gritty competitor added at-bats to her incredible resume. Let's see: 1.13ERA, 119 strikeouts, a 14-1 record, seven shutouts, a second Kissimmee Klassic MVP title and three Final Four appearances.
Not enough, just three losses.
Even more, a .250 batting average, with 18 hits for the season; two doubles, and 10 runs batted in.
Baylee Goddard, OHS, Senior, 3B
Baylee Goddard, University of Florida bound, has her own three Final Fours and a region final count for the past four years, but the imposing dweller of the hot corner wielded unflinching power on the field and in the batter's box.
Batting average .415, three dingers, 26RBIs, leave no doubt, the scariest batter in the area. Not only that, nine doubles, four triples and 25 stolen bases thanks to coach Christina Thompson aggressively spinning right arm.
In the field, her diving snags most fun to watch; 91 touches, 71 putouts and just eight errors; mainly balls no other infielder would even touch, yet Goddard was fast enough to get a glove on it.
Jaeda McFarland, OHS, Senior, OF
What coach Christina Thompson could have done with four years of McFarland bat power; .392 batting average, massive seven homers; did you hear that? seven homers; with 16 RBIs. When McFarland hit it, it was hit with just 10 strikeouts. McFarland was left on the basepaths 48 times.
In the field, her speed was uncanny with 27 stolen bases and her arm a cannon from way back.
Katie Kistler, OHS, Senior, OF
Katie Kistler's speed was her weapon with infielders cringing to get to her grounders with enough time to throw her out and outfielders knowing a simple blooper could be a triple if they blink. Batting average .406, three triples, one double, 16 RBIs, but 31 stolen bases.
Brianna Enter, SJCDS, Senior, P
Brianna Enter, headed to FSU, was coach Deric Enter, her dad's, top player and go-to player; 0.90 earned runs average on the mound with an astounding 177 strikeouts with 13 of 14 games registering double digit whiffs; 21 her best game in a 10-inning showdown, a 2-1 loss with a walkoff homer, in the region semifinal against North Florida Christian.
Enter also hit at .468 with 16 runs batted in off 22 hits; four doubles and five triples.
Brittany Michael, RHS, Soph, P
Brittany Michael, Ridgeview High's workhorse pitcher at 214 strikeouts and a 1.93 earned runs average, was the main cog of the Panther machinery that stealthily worked blue collar to defeat foes and bring a Final Four berth to Ridgeview High School for an historic first time.
When Michael hit the batter's box, she was equally adept at getting to base with 50 times being left on base with a .225 batting average.
Brooke Michael, RHS, Soph, C
Brooke Michael was the Ying with twin sister Brittany Michael the Yang for first year coach Casey Thompson at Ridgeview as the sister thing worked to near perfection for the Panthers.
Brooke batted .411 and was an emotionally-charged attacker in the batter's box with 18 runs batted in; six doubles, five triples and one homer.
Behind the plate, zero errors in 248 touches. Period.
Morgan Kendrick, FIHS, Soph, P
Morgan Kendrick had the toughest job in Clay County as she was one of the toughest pitchers to be faced, but also had the biggest bat for her Fleming Island High softball team.
A .393 batting average blew the old "pitchers can't hit" adage out of the park with two homers, seven doubles and two triples with seven runs batted in.
On the mound, 182 strikeouts; a high of 17 whiffs twice with nine double digit whiff counts, to scare the bejeebies out of enemy batters off a 1.05 earned runs average
Alyssa Adams, RHS, Jr., SS
Alyssa Adams was the smoking gun for coach Casey Thompson with her uncanny timing in getting the big hit for the Panthers. With her .370 team-leading batting average, Adams, with a team-high 24 runs batted in, hit for power with eight doubles, three triples and a homer to lead the Panthers.
At shortstop, Adams turned four double plays off 94 touches to hold a .915 field percentage at the toughest infield position; eight errors only.
Maddie Wilkes, SJCDS, Senior, IF
Maddie Wilkes, heading to West Point, was top homer hitter for the Spartans with four dingers, but got on base via an impressive .571 batting average off nine doubles and two triples with just one strikeout for the season. Wilkes set up teammates Brianna Enter and Linsey Arnett for RBIs with her on base 67 percent often making scores.
Morgan Crutcher, CHS, Soph, P
Morgan Crutcher workhorsed her way to 114 strikeouts for coach Matt Lewis of Clay High to push a fairly young infield to the brink then powered at the plate with a .298 batting average to add three runs batted in.