The Paris Lady Eagles have been on an extraordinary run through the district and regional tournaments, juggling schedules and playing at a high level.
Last Thursday morning they circled the high school and the middle school as the entire student body gathered outside to celebrate the team as they started the long journey to Smackover for the state tournament.
The mid-afternoon game saw Sydney Ward in the circle as Paris played as the home team against Walnut Ridge. The Lady Eagles wasted no time, putting up three runs in the first inning and two more in the fifth. Jadyn Hart and Morgan Johnson each had two hits, with Hart tallying four RBIs. Sydney Ward also added an RBI while Ward dominated from the circle. She rung up 14 strikeouts over six innings before Hart came in to close the game for the 5-2 opening round win over Walnut Ridge.
With graduation Friday night, the Lady Eagles would have a quick turnaround against the number two team in the state, Harmony Grove. The Lady Eagles, playing as the home team, could not get the timely hitting that has been their signature throughout the postseason. Harmony Grove put up three in the third inning and four more in the fifth. The Lady Eagles got one run across in the bottom of the seventh and had a chance to make things interesting, but in the end, fell 8-1 in the quarterfinals.
The Lady Eagles, under the leadership of first-year head coach Donald Hart, played 37 games, almost double what many of their competitors played, winning tournaments and drawing attention to the direction of a young program that will graduate only one senior starter, Morgan Johnson. At 27-10, Paris looks to have a bright future going forward.