May’s slow-pitch state tournament was a role reversal for the softball teams from Dale and Bethel.
In October it was the Pirates who celebrated after winning the fast pitch softball title in Class 2A with a 3-2 win over Savanna, while the Wildcats fell in the 4A finals to Hilldale 7-0.
In the spring it was the Wildcats who finished the job, defeating Sequoyah-Tahlequah 20-10 in the 5A championship game while the Pirates fell to Washington 8-0 to finish as state runners-up in Class 4A.
Bethel scored 40 runs in their three games at the slow-pitch state tournament, opening with a 10-2 win over Henryetta.
The Wildcats nearly lost their semifinal matchup with Purcell, trailing 8-4 in the top of the seventh before rallying for six runs and a 10-8 win.
Bethel trailed early to Sequoyah in the title game after the Indians scored five runs in the top of the first inning. But the Wildcats scored 12 runs in the first two innings and continued to pour it on before eventually run-ruling Sequoyah in five innings.
“We just have a lot of good, talented kids that work hard and are coachable,” Bethel head coach Casey Brewer said after the game. “They rose to the occasion and came forward when we needed them to.”
The Pirates’ season-ending loss in the spring didn’t diminish their fast pitch title from the fall. Freshman pitcher Erin Harris stranded the tying run on third in Dale’s championship win over Savanna, the school’s second title in the sport.
“It was just a dream season,” Dale head coach Andy Powell said. “It’s something we won’t ever forget. It’s pretty unbelievable.”
The Pirates finished the season 40-1 and took the early lead in the title game thanks to a two-run home run by Lacey Hood.
Dale, who were ranked No.1 in Class 2A for the entire season, finished their 2013 campaign with 31 straight wins.