Giants wrap up regular season ranked first in Class AA
HENDERSON, Minn. (KEYC) — The Le Sueur-Henderson Giants sit atop the Class AA High School Softball Rankings for the second consecutive week.
The Giants’ softball team is eyeing its fifth state tournament appearance in the last seven seasons.
“We’re just pretty well-rounded. Our pitching is pretty good, our defense is pretty good, we have a lot of kids who can put the ball in play, and we understand the game pretty well,” head coach Eric Lewis said.
Eight seniors play currently play for the Giants.
“We’ve had them since they were in 8U softball, and we’ve known them since they were babies. It’s just very special,” co-head coach Anne Lewis said.
Through 18 games this season, Le Sueur-Henderson is outscoring opponents 195-39, including victories against tough nonconference opponents.
“When you just know how the teammates around you play, it makes it a lot easier, like when we have the in-between balls, or we just know how to communicate with each other,” senior Hallee Bemmels said.
“I see all of these girls as my sisters,” senior Olivia Fritz added. “I think that we get along really well and the fact that we do get along [makes] it not [so] competitive like it is at other schools. I think that we all just really get along and play well together because we’re confident in each other and that makes our dynamic go up.”
The Giants were in the state tournament when the current seniors were sophomores, and after a dormant 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the group is eager to get back.
“We have that experience and that knowledge of playing in a state tournament and I think a lot of us want to get back to that point,” Bemmels said. “We’ve been there and been in those tight playoff games where it’s right down to the wire, so I think having that experience for a lot of us can help those younger ones who maybe haven’t been there yet.”
“These girls watched that 2014 team go to the state tournament [for the first time]. They were little girls and I know a couple of them made comments to their parents [saying] ‘we can’t wait to put those jerseys on’ and here’s their opportunity. As long as we stay healthy and we play the way that we know how to play and we play with the heart that we have, they’ll be OK,” Anne Lewis said.
The Minnesota high school softball regular season wraps up this week, with section tournaments beginning early next week and the state tournament beginning June 15.
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