Trio of PRCC players honored

Published 7:00 am Thursday, June 12, 2014

POPLARVILLE — Led by former Poplarville High standout Rachel Hickman, a trio of Pearl River Community College softball players have grabbed Region 23 and all-state post-season honors for 2014.

Hickman, just a freshman, was named to the All-Region 23 team, while sophomore catcher Kelsea Lewis of Oak Grove High and sophomore shortstop Kaci Lantrip of Terry High were named to the All-MACJC squad.

In just here first season on the JuCo level, Hickman was one of the top hurlers in the entire NJCAA finishing the season with a 21-10 mound record and accounting for a school-record 120 strikeouts, while boasting a team-best 2.53 earned run average.

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Hickman was also a mainstay at the plate, batting for a .237 average, while smashing four home runs and accounting for 16 RBIs.

“Many of Rachel’s 10 losses can be attributed to our not giving her run support,” said 11th-year head coach Leigh White. “We’re just excited to have her coming back for 2015.

Lewis, a two-year starter for White, is the only Lady Wildcat that will continue her softball career, as she has signed on the the William Carey University Lady Crusaders.

In 2014, she batted a team-high .342 and 35 RBIs, while hitting four home runs.

Lewis will be continuing a Pearl River County and PRCC tradition at Carey for head coach Wendy Hogue.

The Lady Crusaders finished second in the nation this past season at the NAIA World Series with former PRCC standouts Janessa Dedeaux and Brittany LeBlanc as well as former Picayune standout Tiffany Devore all in the starting line-up.

Dedeaux, like Hickman, is a former all-state performer at Poplarville High.

Lantrip, another two-year starter, led the team with eight home runs, including two grand slams, while batting .336 and driving in 33 runs. In addition, Lantrip had a super-impressive .912 fielding percentage.

The 2014 Pearl River team finished with a 28-20 overall record and third place finishes in the MACJC and Region 23 Tournaments.

“I can’t say enough about those three,” said White. “They’re all very worthy of the recognition.”