Area athletes collect All-State softball honors
With another season in the books, the Oklahoma High School Fastpitch Softball Coaches Association recently released All-State rosters.
Ardmore’s Shakira Smith was selected as a utility player for the Large West squad, while Lone Grove’s Noa Dodson (utility) and Emmy Guthrie (pitcher) along with Sulphur’s Kinlee Duck (outfielder) and Shallen Mershon (catcher) will play for the Middle West team.
The All-State games are set for Saturday, June 12, 2021 at Oklahoma Christian University in Edmond. The Large school contest starts at 3:30 p.m., while the Middle game is at 1 p.m.
Smith, who is the midst of a season with the Lady Tigers basketball team, was presented with her All-State jacket on Tuesday.
“I was excited,” Smith said. “I just can’t wait to play in that spring game.”
But she isn’t one to take all the credit, as she knows Ardmore softball coach Lee Mays played an important role in her journey.
“He was really proud of me,” Smith said. “He’s always there to boost me up and tell me how good I’m doing. And he tells others how good I do. He’s just a great coach. He really is.”
Smith lived up to her coach’s words as she hit .490 and added a .926 fielding percentage in the outfield during her senior year.
“Shakira’s leadership and commitment to excellence never wavered,” Mays said. “Her focus and energy were consistent during practice and game time. Always encouraging and elevating her teammates.”
Shifting gears to the Middle West team, which features a pair of Lady Horns who played in the 2020 Class 4A State Championship.
Guthrie, the District 4A-2 Player of the Year, tossed 163 innings in the circle and finished with a 28-2 record. The senior struck out 310 and tallied 20 shutout wins and eight no-hitters.
Dodson hit .408 with 12 doubles, two triples and three home runs, while also driving in 34 runs at second base during her senior campaign.
Meanwhile, Sulphur's Mershon finished with .483 batting average along with a team-high 53 RBIs and five home runs to earn District 3A-3 Player of the Year honors.
Duck hit .483 with 16 doubles, eight triples and 24 RBIs to pick up District 3A-3 Co-Offensive Player of the Year honors.