LHSAA reveals softball pairings, 29 area teams to play in much-anticipated postseason

Rodrick Anderson

High school softball playoffs have returned to Louisiana.

The Louisiana High School Athletic Association released the brackets Thursday afternoon, 690 days since the last postseason game on May 27, 2019.

The coronavirus pandemic canceled almost the entire 2020 season, and a pair of hurricanes added an extra hurdle as Southwest Louisiana teams prepared for the 2021 season. But the excitement has not been lost, said Barbe head coach Candyce Carter.

“It is definitely exciting,” Carter said. “There is nothing like the postseason. Anything can happen. COVID and hurricanes were such a damper on last season and the beginning of this year. We are excited these kids get an opportunity to compete. We are super happy.”

The Bucs are one of three No. 3 seeds who will lead a contingent of 29 teams from Southwest Louisiana into the postseason. Rosepine is the third seed in Class 2A and Merryville in 1A.

The state tournament will be played April 30 and May 1 at North Frasch Park in Sulphur with semifinal games on the first day and all finals on the second.

Barbe (26-2) will host District 3-5A rival No. 30 New Iberia (9-16) at 5 p.m. Monday. The Bucs reached the 5A final in 2019.

“We just want to take it one game at a time and just get after it,” Carter said. “I told the girls the regular season is open and everyone is 0-0. We just have to take care of business.”

Rosepine (25-3) has won 16 of its last 17 games and will host No. 30 Delhi Charter (4-22) at 5 p.m. Monday.

Merryville (16-5) got a bye in the first round and will host No. 14 Slaughter Community Charter (6-10) in the regional round.

The only other top-four seed from Southwest Louisiana is Class 3A No. 4 Iowa (22-5), which will host No. 29 Ville Platte (4-12) in the opening round.

There will be three games pitting area teams against each other. In Class 5A, No. 6 Sam Houston (24-5) will host District 3-5A rival Sulphur (9-16) at 4:30 p.m. Monday. Sam Houston beat Sulphur 7-1 in the regional round in 2019.

In Class 4A, No. 19 Washington-Marion, making what is believed to be its first playoff appearance in program history, will travel to No. 14 DeRidder. Class 2A No. 10 Lake Arthur will host parish and district rival No. 23 Welsh at 5:30 p.m. Monday.

Other area teams hosting first-round games include 3A No. 8 South Beauregard (18-14), 2A No. 9 Kinder (18-12), 4A No. 13 Leesville (13-21), and Class B members No. 16 Fairview (11-7), No. 13 Pitkin (18-13), No. 14 Lacassine (12-12) and No. 15 Elizabeth (13-10).

Class B No. 8 Bell City (11-7), Class C teams No. 11 Starks (7-15) and No. 15 South Cameron along with 1A No. 6 Oberlin (12-6) and No. 8 Grand Lake (12-13) received first-round byes.””

Halie Pappion and the Barbe Bucs will be the No. 3 seed in the Class 5A playoffs, which begin Monday.

Kirk Meche / Special to the American Press

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