News from the Tennessee Valley Sports

Hartselle's Orr, Law. Co.'s Burch make Super 10
Pair lead 19 area players
on softball all-state squad

By Brooke Milam 340-2460

For years now, Hartselle High's Kayla Orr and Lawrence County's Sallie Beth Burch have been proving themselves on the softball diamond.

And on Saturday, the two seniors have capped their high school careers by earning top honors Saturday as the Alabama Sports Writers Association announces its all-state team.

Orr and Burch landed on the ASWA Super 10 team, which includes the best 10 players in all classifications.

Orr made Class 5A first-team all-state as a shortstop, while Burch was first team in 4A as a second baseman. Each was selected ASWA player of the year in her respective classification.

In all, the area of Morgan, Limestone and Lawrence counties plus Addison produced 10 first-team selections and nine honorable mentions representing nine schools.

The ASWA's Mr. Baseball winner and the ASWA all-state baseball team will be released Sunday.

The awards come as no surprise to Hartselle coach Shane Alexander, who said Orr is among the best players that his successful Lady Tigers program has turned out in recent years.

"(Orr) can change the outcome of a game with one swing, and defensively there are not many places she can't play," Alexander said. "She deserves every award she gets."

Lawrence County coach Don Smith said Burch had the same kind of impact on his Lady Red Devils.

"She was a big part of our offense and our defense," Smith said. "I guess you'd say she was the cornerstone. Her leadership was also important. So she helped us in all three categories. The kids counted on her. We all counted on her."

Burch, a Wallace State-Hanceville signee, batted .471 this season and her 74 hits, including 16 doubles, 13 home runs, 57 RBIs and 54 runs scored paced the Lady Red Devils to a 49-17 finish, setting a school record for wins.

Lawrence County advanced to the state tournament for the first time since the state adopted the fast-pitch format 11 years ago.

In addition to Burch, the school landed sophomore pitcher Summer Wilkerson on the all-state list. She was named honorable mention.

Orr's .440 batting average included 80 hits, 16 doubles, 64 RBIs and 51 runs scored, helping Hartselle to a 53-16 record, which set a school record for wins.

The Lady Tigers were ranked No. 1 in the final ASWA softball poll of the season and narrowly missed a return trip to the 5A state tournament in Montgomery, falling to Scottsboro in the second round of sub-state play.

Orr, a UABsignee, set an school record with 17 home runs this season, and was joined by three Lady Tigers teammates on the all-state list. Senior pitcher Breanna Segar and junior outfielder Kristy Pevahouse were first team, while second baseman Whitley Collins made honorable mention.

In Class 2A, West Morgan sophomore pitcher Lauren Seibert was named first team all-state after posting a 42-14 record with 16 shutouts, striking out 437 batters in 364 innings pitched this season. Addison senior Kayla Woodard was selected first team as a utility player.

In 1A, Speake's battery of sophomore pitcher Kylie Black and senior catcher Revia Brown made first team. Athens Bible's senior shortstop Kirsten McClure was also named first team, along with junior Abbie Melvin as a utility player.

Honorable mention selections included 5A Decatur sophomore catcher Whitney Fletcher, 4A Ardmore junior pitcher Casey Steadman, 3A Elkmont senior outfielder Elizabeth Locke, 2A Addison junior pitcher Kayla Carden and junior second baseman Britney Taylor, 1A Mount Hope senior pitcher Elizabeth Kimbrough, and Speake junior outfielder Paige Atkins.

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