The Lake-Sumter State College (LSSC) softball team has made history by winning their first-ever state championship in the 2023 Florida College System Activities Association (FCSAA) Division II / National Junior College Athletics Association Region 8 Softball Championship. The Lakehawks, who entered the tournament as the number one seed, defeated Pasco-Hernando State College (PHSC) in a thrilling game on Saturday to secure the championship.
The team’s success is a testament to their hard work and dedication on and off the field. Head Coach Jay Miller expressed his pride in the team’s effort, “Today was a dream come true for this team and the program; something that in 2015, we did not know was possible.” The team’s victory is a source of pride for the college, as it highlights the achievements of LSSC’s student-athletes and the quality of the college’s athletics program.
Impressive performances by players marked the Lakehawks’ journey to the championship. Pitchers Ali Shenefield and Darian Pippin were outstanding, with Shenefield being named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Pitcher and Pippin recording the win in the final game. Raquel Camuglia was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player for her strong offensive performance, which included seven hits, three doubles, three RBIs, three walks, and four runs scored.
But the team’s success was truly a group effort, with several players earning recognition on the all-tournament team. Kreighton Steinke, Ali Shenefield, Raquel Camuglia, Molly Bender, and Darian Pippin all made the team, demonstrating the depth and talent of the Lakehawks roster.
The team’s success extends beyond the softball field, however. These student-athletes are exemplary representatives of LSSC, demonstrating the values of hard work, dedication, and sportsmanship. They are not only successful athletes but also successful students and community members.
As the Lakehawks move on to the South Atlantic District Championship and prepare to host the Region 10 champions Louisburg College, the college community is proud of their accomplishments and eager to support them in their quest for a national championship. The team’s success reflects the excellence that characterizes LSSC and its students and inspires all those who strive for greatness.
Lake-Sumter now advances to the South Atlantic District Championship.
The Lakehawks will play a three-game series next weekend, with the winner advancing to the Spartanburg, South Carolina national championship. You can follow along with Lakehawks Athletics on social media @LakeHawkSports on Instagram and Twitter and Lake-Sumter State College Athletics on Facebook. Or visit their website at www.lakehawksports.com