By Larry Lamb
TRINITY COUNTY – Softball players from three counties have joined forces to bring the Dixie Debs (19u) World Series title back home to East Texas.
Disturbed, an All-Star team representing Tri-Cities Youth Softball League in Apple Springs, will compete in the Dixie World Series in Alexandria, La. as Texas Dixie State Champions. The tournament gets underway Friday, July 29.
Disturbed's roster consists of high school players from Apple Springs, Kennard, Crockett, Latexo, Centerville/Groveton and Latexo. An Angelina College student rounds out the team.
Houston County team members are Trinity Meadows, Julia Tapia, Akeelah Whiting and Alex Kane of Crockett, Terrah Breaux and Darbi Ennis of Kennard and Shelby Coker of Latexo.
Trinity County players are Shi'Lynn Lee, Chloe Aycock and Kayla Pickle of Apple Springs. Brianna Commiato of Centerville/Groveton. Angelina College student Layla Powell completes the 12-player roster.
Meadows, Lee, Breaux, Ennis and Pickle are all 2022 high school graduates.
Disturbed's head coach is Chris Dickens, who is assisted by Gary Fitch and Shona Lee.
"This great group of young ladies will represent Tri-Cities, their communities and the great state of Texas at the World Series.
This is an amazing and historical event for these young ladies," said Meri Dickens, commissioner for Tri-Cities Youth Softball.
"This is exciting news not just for Tri-Cities Softball," said Dickens, who noted that her research indicates Disturbed will not only be Tri-Cities' first team to play in the Dixie World Series but also the first softball team from Trinity, Houston or Angelina counties to compete in the DWS.
Texas fielded only two 19u Dixie Softball teams this year since most leagues have a cutoff of 15u, explained Dickens. Disturbed was declared the state champion when the other team dropped out.
Dickens said the World Series bracket will not be finalized until all state tournaments are completed next week.
It's possible the bracket could include teams from Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Georgia. "That is provided that each of those states have a 19u team that will represent them at the WorldSeries," she said.
Disturbed has been busy conducting several fund-raisers for the trip and welcomes donations.
A GoFundMe account has been established for Disturbed as "Tri-Cities 19u Dixie World Series."