Home Win On Senior Night A Bonus Celebration
Zephyrhills Girls Softball paid tribute to seniors Laila Huffman, Aleah Killebrew, Gisele Navarra and Amber Leach prior to Monday’s 5-1 win over visiting Fort Meade.
In an emotional ceremony before the game, the four seniors were joined by their families, where they received gifts and flowers from coaches.
Killebrew helped pace the Bulldogs with a pair of doubles. Junior Brooke Lea hit her third home run of the season while Alex Bowe-Wootton pitched a complete game allowing just four hits and striking out eight.
Huffman, Killebrew and Navarra have been lacing up their cleats together dating back to their Little League days, the same time their journey of sisterhood began.
“We were on different teams back then, but we were still together. Being a Bulldog is being in a family,” Navarra said. “We bond together on and off the field.”
This was Huffman’s fourth and final senior night recognition. She was honored for volleyball, cheerleading and soccer. The softball farewell had a different meaning
“These are the people I’m closest with,” Huffman said. “These are my people. They are my family.”
The four seniors literally left their mark on the program as they signed their names in paint on the home dugout.
“It’s great to be with them for this tonight,” said Killebrew, who recently signed a softball scholarship to play at Florida Memorial University. “I know this is going to be one of the last times we get to play together. We will see each other in the future, but we won’t play together much longer.”
The Miners took a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Killebrew’s first double opened up the scoring for the Bulldogs as she drove in a pair of runs in the second inning. Izabella Mathis had a RBI single in the fifth. In the sixth Amberlyn Davis and Harmonie Scribner each scored in the sixth to extend the Bulldogs’ lead.
For first-year head coach Kristen Dumont, the victory was sweet, but seeing getting a win on their senior night was something special.
“They are so close,” Dumont said. “They have played together for so long. They all provide their own type of leadership on the field. Some lead by example and others are vocal. To watch them get honored before the game was great and to see them get a win on their senior night is deserving.”