High school softball: Best team in each state
Xavier College Prep, Saint Francis, Lakewood Ranch headline top programs hitting diamond this year.
The high school softball landscape is a bit tricky to understand if you look at who plays what and when throughout the country. Five states play their ball fully in the fall, Mississippi has some teams who play in the spring and others who opt for the fall, Iowa plays in the summer, South Dakota still doesn’t have sanctioned high school softball and the remaining states play in the spring.
The Huskies return several of the key weapons who helped lead them to a 7A state championship in 2021. Kenleigh Cahalan, an Alabama commit and 2021 First-team MaxPreps Underclass All-American, was one of the top hitters in the country with 17 home runs, 85 RBI and a .517 batting average.
South Anchorage (Anchorage)
The defending Division I champions have won three state titles in the past six years. The Wolverines return Emily McCutcheon, who batted .557 and blasted 15 home runs as a sophomore.
Xavier College Prep (Phoenix)
The Gators went on a roll to close out 2021 as the 6A state champions. Two of the top players in the state return for their senior seasons. Bridget Donahey, a Northwestern commit, launched 10 home runs last spring, and Harvard commit Riley Flynn went 16-2 in the circle.
The defending Class 5A softball state champions went 31-0 in 2021. Although the Panthers lost some major talent to graduation, they still have a solid group returning, including one of the top athletes in the 2023 class in Alyssa Houston.
Saint Francis (Mountain View)
The top-ranked team from California in 2021 after a perfect season returns nearly its entire lineup. 2022 Minnesota commit power hitter Jessica Oakland and 2023 pitcher Chloe Cummings are two of the best in the state.