Little Cypress-Mauriceville had a very strong softball team last year. The Lady Bears only lost two district games, both to district champ Bridge City before running out of gas in the playoffs against Huffman.
Coach Dena Adkins returns almost her entire squad from last season. Brianna Frenzel returns as the Lady Bears’ starting pitcher and will play some third base. Renna Toomey starts at shortstop and will be the second pitcher. Joanna Henry and Madison Murdock both return to the outfield for LC-M and Morgan Weaver returns after being named a first team selection as designated player.
Shelby Smith and Ally White are returning seniors to the varsity. Olivia Leavings will be back as the starting catcher. Megan Peveto is a junior who will get plenty of playing time for the Lady Bears. Sophomore Bailey Frenzel was a starter last season and will be so again this year. “Every position is filled by a returner,” Adkins stated.
There are not many holes to fill on the varsity, but Adkins does have some younger Lady Bears that deserve a closer look. Two newcomers that actually did get moved up to the varsity last season for the playoffs are Madeline Stephenson and Karson Friar. Stephenson will see a lot of time as a middle infielder for LC-M. Friar is a left handed hitter with good speed on the bases. Adkins said, “She can do some time in the outfield if need be.”
Hitting has been a strong part of the past successes for Little Cypress-Mauriceville. Coach Adkins is all smiles about this year’s Lady Bears’ bats. She is very confident with any of the nine Lady Bears that are chosen to start in a game. “I really do have nine, ten actually, solid players I could put in at any time to contribute a run or two,” Adkins praised.
There is no doubt who the number one pitcher for the Lady Bears will be as Brianna Frenzel returns for her fourth year as the starter. Adkins has other candidates for the circle who will give LC-M a strong pitching staff. Toomey is a quality number two pitcher, and Brianna’s younger sister Bailey gives the Lady Bears three pitchers any other team would want to have at least one of them. Adkins exclaimed, “It’s a good problem to have, and I’m really excited to see what happens this year.”
Solid hitting and strong pitching both seem like good ingredients for a team looking to win the district and advance far in the playoffs. Coach Adkins admits she would be very upset if LC-M did not win the district.
It has been over a decade since Little Cypress-Mauriceville went to the final four and won the state championship in softball. The coach is really optimistic the Lady Bears could be ready for another trip to Austin this year. “This is a strong, strong team, and I don’t feel like I’d be doing my job very well if we didn’t win district and go far in the playoffs. If they continue to work hard good things are going to happen,” Adkins concluded.
-Dan Perrine, KOGT-