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NMAA 2023 State Softball Teams to Watch 4-5A

Article and Photos by Jonathan Noah Padilla

Teams to watch in the 2023 #NMAA 4-5A softball championships from @bagthebandit

Centennial Hawks

The Hawks are undefeated and have unfinished business from last years championship. They have the talent to finish a perfect season. Zantelle Rodriguez and Amanda Valles are two major sticks in the lineup that bring in a plethora of runs. In the circle, Caprice Barela, leads the state in wins. You can be sure that Centennial will be a treat to watch.

Carlsbad Cavegirls

The Cavegirls are defending State Champions and are looking to repeat. They have a large amount of seniors that know what it takes to win it all. I’ve seen this team roll through opponents and their experience definitely shows. They have four seniors that are hitting above the .500 mark this season (Faith Aragon, Johnna Aragon, Hannah Martinez, and Madison Flaco). Faith also dominates as a pitcher along with Haiven Schoolcraft. Carlsbad’s quest to repeat will be fun to watch.

La Cueva Bears

La Cueva is a team with only two seniors on the roster. That being said, these girls can ball out. This is one Bear that you do not want to poke. I’ve seen them in close games and they have no fear. They fell short in a one run game against Carlsbad that ended on time in the Kristin Griego tournament. I would of loved to see that game go all 7 innings. The Bear’s lineup can turnover time and time again with Addison Byers and Nadya Moreno providing power at the plate. Hannah Hunt and Lainey Alcaraz make quite a pitching duo for the Bears. This year’s APS Metro Champions are looking to add a blue trophy to the case and have the potential to spoil Centennial and Carlsbad’s title hopes.

Volcano Vista Hawks

The Hawks of Volcano Vista are a good all around team. They know how to put runs on the board and can hang around in games. Sixx Arnold and Mackenzie Vela are two notable hitters along with Jayci Johnson who leads the team in RBI’s. When it comes to pitching Volcano Vista is reliant on the arms of freshmen Audrianna Jim and Audrey Gutierrez who are backed by a generally stout defense. If the Hawks can get hot and stay hot, they can make some noise.

Piedra Vista Panthers

Piedra Vista is a threat to make a run to the championship. They only have one loss to a New Mexico team all season, that team was La Cueva. Freshman Isabella Jessee leads the team with a .460 BA. Followed closely by sophomore Brookelynne Cadrain and senior Emma Lovato. Piedra Vista will no doubt have Emma hurling the ball for them. She is one of, if not, the best pitchers in the entire state and is the leader in strikeouts with 217 K’s on the season.

4A Teams

  • Artesia – Notable wins: Hobbs, Farmington
  • Silver City – Notable wins: Alamogordo,
  • St. Pius X – Notable wins: Albuquerque, Sandia
  • Los Alamos – Notable wins: Volcano Vista
  • Gallup – Notable wins: Rio Rancho, Artesia

Upset potential:

Alamogordo, Cibola, Albuquerque, Farmington, Lovington, Miyamura

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Teams to watch in the 2023 #NMAA 4-5A softball championships from @bagthebandit

Jonathan Noah Padilla

Jonathan Noah Padilla is the sports journalist/photographer for The Hideout. Sports are what he loves. He covers games and spotlights your local athletes in New Mexico. He worked for eleven years in graphic design, marketing, social media management, and content creation for various business’ and is a current U.S. Army officer. You can also find him officiating local high school basketball games. Be sure to say hi to “The Bandit” when you see him out at your games.

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