THE WINNER: Baylee Corbello
School: Sam Houston (Lake Charles, La.)
Athletic achievement: The state’s returning Gatorade Softball Player of the Year led the Broncos (21-9) to a second straight Class 5A state championship this past season. A stress fracture in her rib prevented Corbello from pitching until late in the season as she posted a 7-0 record in the circle with a 0.32 ERA and 122 strikeouts in 65 innings pitched. Corbello pitched back-to-back no-hitters to open the playoffs and struck out 16 batters in an 8-0 win over Mount Carmel Academy (New Orleans, La.) in the state final. At the plate, the two-time Louisiana Sports Writers Association’s Miss Softball winner batted .439 with seven home runs, 36 RBI and a .816 slugging percentage.
Academic excellence: Corbello has maintained an A average.
Exemplary character: A devoted member of her church community, she has volunteered locally at a women’s shelter, as a youth softball coach and has donated her time with Buddy Ball, which organizes T-ball games for physically challenged children.
“Baylee was hurt for a big part of this season and still came in at the end of the season and dominated,” said Sarah Portie, head coach of Barbe (Lake Charles, La.). “Not only can she pitch, she can hit, too. She is a game-changing player.”
THE FUTURE: Corbello has signed with LSU.