LAURINBURG — A roller coaster 2018 season came to an end on Monday as the Lady Scots softball team learned they would not be advancing to the 4A state playoffs.
The team finished the season 9-10 overall and 5-9 in the Sandhills Athletic Conference for sixth out of eight teams. The Lady Scots ended the year on a three-game losing streak after dropping their series to Richmond and falling in the first round of the conference tournament to Purnell Swett, 4-1.
The Lady Scots lose five players to graduation — outfielders Mason Roberts and Kandon Luquer, catcher Jenna Byrd, short stop Katie Lighthall and third baseman Macie Gibson. Gibson will continue her softball career at Lenoir-Rhyne in the fall.
The team will return both starting pitchers in sophomores Katie Smith and Bree Steele along with second baseman freshman Madison Williams and junior right fielder Kassee Lowe. Also returning are junior Nakiya Locklear, sophomore McKenzie Wilkerson and junior Dzyere McIntyre.
Despite the Lady Scots missing the playoff cut, five teams from the SAC-8 did advance — Richmond, Jack Britt, Purnell Swett, Hoke County and Lumberton.
The Lady Raiders earned the No. 1 seed in the 4A West and earned a first-round bye with a 21-3 record. Purnell Swett earned the No. 14 seed in the West with a 15-7 record and will host No. 19 Ardrey Kell (16-7).
Jack Britt earned the highest seed in the East at No. 8 with an 18-5 record to earn a first-round bye. Lumberton earned the No. 15 seed with a 15-9 record and will host No. 18 Rolesville (11-8). Hoke County was the final SAC-8 team to earn a bid as the No. 16 seed in the East with a 15-8 record. The Lady Bucks will host No. 17 Holly Springs (8-12).
Amber Hatten-Staley can be reached at 910-506-3170 or [email protected]urinburgexchange.com.