Five Houston High School softball players are members of the top-ranked team in the state.
The Mid-MO Evolution sit atop the Missouri fastpitch girls’ 16-and-under rankings for the United States Speciality Sports Association after winning the April Classic this past weekend in Columbia. The team is also ranked seventh in the region and 16th in the nation.
Representing HHS on the team are juniors Taylor Franklin and Belle Knarr, sophomore Lizzy Swindell and freshman Autumn Walker. Sophomore Olivia Woosley is recovering from ACL surgery and is unable to play.
The Evolution, who are based out of Waynesville and coached by Jason Marcum, are 11-4 this season and 6-1 against competition in their class. They are averaging 6.3 runs per game and winning by an average of 3.3 points per game.
Over the weekend at the April Classic in Columbia, the Evolution beat 360 Missouri (9-2), Mpulse (12-1) and Mid Mo Mayhem (4-2) to reach the championship game. They won the title with a 9-1 victory against the Columbia Rockers. The Evolution dedicated their victory to Houston businessman and HHS sports advocate Mark Forbes, whose funeral was Saturday morning.
The previous weekend, the Evolution finished second in the Strike-Out Hunger tournament in Independence.
Based out of Waynesville, the 16-and-under fastpitch softball team is No. 1 in the state rankings. Team members from Houston High School are:
- Taylor Franklin, jr.
- Belle Knarr, jr.
- Lizzy Swindell, soph.
- *Olivia Woosley, soph.
- Autumn Walker, fr.
*Woosley is recovering from ACL surgery and is not currently playing.