LHSAA softball playoffs: Tough schedule helps net Parkview Baptist top seed in Class 3A _lowres

Advocate staff photo by BRIANNA PACIORKA -- Parkview Baptist center fielder Annmarie Peavy attempts a diving catch against Brusly on April 7. The Eagles are the No. 1 seed in the Class 3A playoffs and will host No. 32 Iowa.

The first part of the payoff for playing such a demanding schedule showed up for Parkview Baptist’s softball team with Thursday’s release of the LHSAA’s state playoff pairings.

The Lady Eagles (24-8) were awarded a coveted No. 1 seed in the Class 3A bracket and begin first-round play at 5 p.m. Monday against No. 32 Iowa (8-18).

Sulphur’s Frasch Park will once again be the site for the Fast Pitch 56 state tournament April 29-30.

“It feels good. These girls deserved it,” Parkview coach Ashlee Weems said. “They worked really hard. We set up a pretty tough schedule and in my eyes that’s just to prepare them for the playoffs, no matter what our seed would have been.”

Parkview is the local-area’s only top-seeded team and heads up a total of 25 teams moving on to postseason play.

District 4-5A co-champion Zachary (22-5) landed a No. 2 seed in Class 5A, District 7-B champion Holden (28-3) received a No. 2 seed in Class B and an opening-round bye, while District 6-1A champion Ascension Catholic (16-8) is a fourth seed in Class 1A and Maurepas (21-5) is second in Class C.

“We’re just really excited,” Holden coach David Knight said. “We’ve had a great season. Our girls have worked really hard. We’re excited about what we’ve been able to accomplish this year.”

There are a couple of storylines that developed in Class 5A with District 5-5A champion No. 7 St. Amant (23-5) hosting No. 26 Denham Springs (12-16).

When District 4-5A co-champion Live Oak (22-6) hosts No. 28 Acadiana (14-13) at 6 p.m. Tuesday, it will mark the third meeting between the teams in just over a month.

Live Oak registered wins of 7-6 on March 13 and 9-1 on March 26.

“It’s definitely the playoffs, and they produce new teams, even your own team,” Live Oak coach Michelle Morris said. “There’s two fresh teams playing each other in a fresh game. I think you’ll see a good, competitive game. We really can’t bank on what we’ve done in the past against them.”

Parkview, which reached the quarterfinals a year ago, is riding a wave of momentum that includes six wins in its past seven games, including a dramatic 7-6 victory last week over Brusly for the District 6-3A championship.

“You can’t take anything for granted,” Weems said. “You have to go in with the mind-set of being confident. I think the Brusly game helped boost our confidence a bit and gave us more momentum going into the playoffs.”

No. 8 Central’s (22-6) another Class 5A team that will host No. 25 Chalmette (17-7), while both District 6-3A teams West Feliciana (15-11) host No. 17 E.D. White (14-12) and No. 6 Brusly (20-13) entertains No. 27 De La Salle (7-10) at 5 p.m. Tuesday.

A trio of area Class 1A teams — No. 8 Catholic-Pointe Coupee (12-11), No. 10 St. John-Plaquemine (13-9) and Ascension Catholic — will host first-round games.

Holden, with a mix of five seniors and six eighth-graders, has been one of the area’s most consistent teams this season. The Lady Rockets won their first 12 games and stood 24-1 before sustaining losses to St. Amant (5-3) and Class 2A Riverside (10-2).

“We needed our seniors. We needed that leadership to help develop the younger girls and get them to produce,” Knight said. “The seniors have done a great job of bridging the gap, and the young ones have done a good of job listening to them and being able to contribute.”