College softball kicked off last Thursday and that means high school softball isn't far behind!
Starting next week, Extra Inning Softball will once again run our Extra Elite Eighty High School Rankings led by Mark Tennis, the long-time rankings expert on high school sports nationally and California as he is the producer and editor of CalHiSports.com, the best source of all things in prep sports across the Golden State!
Hopefully, you've been checking out our weekday editions of The Last Inning including this one which featured a scouting report on Norco (California) High. Rick Robinson's team is loaded with talent and has to be a favorite to be the preseason #1 in the Extra Elite Eighty.
However, there are several teams in Florida and in Texas who look strong and Male (Louisville, Kentucky) High is coming off a 39-0 season so there are a lot of candidates to be at the top!
To remind you who finished strong last spring, check out our final 2019 rankings. Also, we did a Fall Extra Elite 25 and those teams will be considered when we do our final 2019-2020 high school ratings.
Keep checking out back regularly... it's going to be an exciting year in high school softball and we will have it covered!
--- Brentt Eads, Extra Inning Softball
Breaking News: Final 2019 Extra Elite Eighty High School Rankings
Originally published June 17, 2019 on Extra Inning Softball
Entering the last two weekends of high school softball state championships in the Midwest, there was still a chance for a lot of shakeups in the final Extra Elite Eighty High School Rankings for the 2019 season.
Both of the two highest ranked teams in the region -- which typically starts and ends the high school season several weeks later than most other states due to the weather -- capped off unbeaten seasons, but the third highest fell short in Illinois.
In Saturday’s Kentucky High School Athletic Association state final, Male of Louisville surged in the late innings to beat Warren East (Bowling Green) 6-1. The Bulldogs trailed 1-0 after the top of the fifth inning, but scored twice in the bottom of the fifth and then four times in the sixth.
Kelsie Houchens pitched a five-hitter and struck out nine for Male and was an ace all season. Outfielder Jaelyn Sanders plated the first run with an RBI double and smacked a bases-loaded three-run double that gave the Bulldogs plenty of breathing room.
Male became just the second Kentucky team to go unbeaten since the KHSAA went to fast-pitch playoffs in 1995. It’s also important to note that just like in other sports there are no divisions in Kentucky high school softball playoffs. The Bulldogs have won an all-class format bracket.
For this week’s final rankings, Male was given a one-spot bump from No. 8 to No. 7.
In the Wisconsin Division I state final from the previous weekend, unbeaten Oshkosh North needed extra innings to get past two-time defending champion Sun Prairie, 4-2.
National player of the year candidate and Northwestern-bound Sydney Supple struck out 11, ended with a state tourney record 36 strikeouts in all of her playoff games and called it “a dream come true” to reporters when asked about the season and how it ended.
The Spartans finished at No. 10 as they broke a 2-2 tie in the ninth vs. Sun Prairie when a pop-up hit by Supple was dropped for an error. Teammate Sophie Averkamp then delivered an RBI single. Supple then pitched a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth for the state title.
The third of the top-ranked Midwest teams over the past two weekends didn’t have similar success. Previous No. 15 Marist of Chicago, in fact, had to drop out of the final rankings after losing in the semifinals and then in the third-place game of the Class 4A state playoffs in Illinois. For the final rankings, 4A champ Huntley was put in as one of six final newcomers.
There also wound up being no teams from Michigan in the final rankings as both Hartland and Clarkston (which were in the most recent Extra Elite Eighty ranked team) lost in the Division I state playoffs.
The eventual champion of that bracket, Regina of Warren, finished with 11 losses, but once again proved never to bet against legendary head coach Diane Laffey.
In her 49th season (that’s not a typo, that’s 49), her girls captured her seventh state title (against no losses) with a 3-2 win in eight innings on Saturday against Howell.
Congratulations to all of the teams that have been in this season’s Extra Elite Eighty.
(Previous ranking in parentheses)
(Through games of Saturday June 15)
1. (1) Winter Springs (Winter Springs, Fla.) 31-0
2. (2) Norco (Norco, Calif.) 31-1
3. (3) Lakewood Ranch (Bradenton, Fla.) 30-1
4. (4) Foothill (Pleasanton, Calif.) 28-0
5. (5) Katy (Katy, Texas) 37-2
6. (6) Coral Springs Charter (Coral Springs, Fla.) 29-1
7. (8) Male (Louisville, Ky.) 39-0
8. (7) Klein Collins (Klein, Texas) 38-3
9. (9) Angleton (Angleton, Texas) 39-2
10. (10) Oshkosh North (Oshkosh, Wis.) 31-0
11. (11) Great Oak (Temecula, Calif.) 26-4-1
12. (12) Keller (Keller, Texas) 35-4-1
13. (13) Mater Dei Catholic (Chula Vista, Calif.) 31-4
14. (14) Neshoba Central (Philadelphia, Miss.) 33-2
15. (16) Shawnee Heights (Tecumseh, Kan.) 23-1
16. (17) Lutheran (Orange, Calif.) 23-7-1
17. (18) Oakleaf (Orange Park, Fla.) 25-5
18. (19) Jackson (Mill Creek, Wash.) 26-2
19. (20) Barbers Hill (Mt. Belvieu, Texas) 42-4
20. (21) Gahr (Cerritos, Calif.) 22-6
21. (22) Shadow Ridge (Las Vegas, Nev.) 34-2
22. (26) Jonathan Adler (Plain City, Ohio) 29-1
23. (23) Forney (Forney, Texas) 36-4
24. (24) Trenton (Trenton, Fla.) 27-0
25. (25) Santiago (Corona, Calif.) 19-6-1
26. (27) Baylor (Chattanooga, Tenn.) 39-4
27. (28) Grand Terrace (Grand Terrace, Calif.) 25-4
28. (29) Cedar Ridge (Round Rock, Texas) 30-1
29. (30) Santa Margarita (Rancho SM, Calif.) 25-4
30. (31) Wellington (Wellington, Fla.) 25-3
31. (32) West Stanly (Oakboro, N.C.) 24-0
32. (35) Huntingtown (Huntingtown, Md.) 22-1
33. (39) Donovan Catholic (Toms River, N.J.) 28-2
34. (34) Keystone (La Grange, Ohio) 28-1
35. (36) Heritage (Brentwood, Calif.) 25-3
36. (46) Williamsville East (East Amherst, N.Y.) 27-0
37. (38) V.R. Eaton (Fort Worth, Texas) 32-4
38. (40) O’Connor (Phoenix, Ariz.) 24-6
39. (41) Pinnacle (Phoenix, Ariz.) 25-4
40. (42) Lexington (Lexington, S.C.) 26-4
41. (NR) Center Grove (Greenwood, Ind.) 28-3
42. (NR) Manchester (Midlothian, Va.) 23-1
43. (43) Park Vista (Lake Worth, Fla.) 29-3
44. (44) Huntington Beach (Huntington Beach, Calif.) 18-9
45. (45) Chino Hills (Chino Hills, Calif.) 28-5
46. (NR) White Knoll (Lexington, S.C) 22-2
47. (47) St. John Vianney (Holmdel, N.J.) 27-1
48. (NR) Huntley (Huntley, Ill.) 35-7
49. (NR) St. Amant (St. Amant, La.) 29-3-1
50. (NR) Central Dauphin (Harrisburg, Pa.) 25-2
TEAMS ON THE BUBBLE
- Apopka (Apopka, Fla.) 37-2
- Bartow (Bartow, Fla.) 25-4
- Bridgewater-Raynham (Bridgewater, Mass.) 23-1*
- Buckhorn (New Market, Ala.) 28-7
- Byrnes (Duncan, S.C.) 29-5
- Calallen (Corpus Christi, Texas) 35-6
- Clarkston (Clarkston, Mich.) 36-3
- Cypress Ranch (Cypress, Texas) 25-8
- Deer Park (Deer Park, Texas) 33-6
- Forrest (Chapel Hill, Tenn.) 37-5
- Free State (Lawrence, Kan.) 23-2
- Hazleton (Hazleton, Pa.) 23-2
- Ironwood Ridge (Tucson, Ariz.) 26-6
- Lake City (Coeur d’Alene, Idaho) 26-1
- Lake Stevens (Lake Stevens, Wash.) 19-5
- Lakota East (Liberty Township, Ohio) 30-2
- Leo (Leo, Ind.) 25-2
- Lincoln-Way Central (New Lenox, Ill.) 32-3
- Louisville (Louisville, Ohio) 27-4
- Marist (Chicago, Ill.) 36-4
- Mountain View (Meridian, Idaho) 27-3
- Notre Dame (Crowley, La.) 35-0-1
- Oakdale (Oakdale, Calif.) 29-1-1
- Oaks Christian (Westlake Village, Calif.) 22-5-1
- Riverside-Brookfield (Riverside, Ill.) 27-5
- Salpointe Catholic (Tucson, Ariz.) 25-4
- Sheldon (Eugene, Ore.) 24-3
- Sherwood (Sandy Springs, Md.) 24-1
- Smyrna (Smyrna, Del.) 22-2
- Southington (Southington, Conn.) 22-3
- Sun Prairie (Sun Prairie, Wis.) 28-4
- Sycamore (Sycamore, Ill.) 33-6-1
- Sunrise Mountain (Peoria, Ariz.) 20-1
- The Colony (The Colony, Texas) 39-3
- Warren East (Bowling Green, Ky.) 35-3
- Washburn Rural (Topeka, Kan.) 23-1
- West (Salt Lake City, Utah) 26-2
- Wylie (Wylie, Texas) 33-4
*Season not complete in Massachusetts.