The Chipola Lady Indians scored a 4-3 win over Indian River to capture the FCSAA State Softball Championship on May 9.
Five Chipola players were named to the FCSAA All-Tournament Team— Most Valuable Player: Zayla McBurrows, Natalie Kopicova, Kinzie Nelson and Madisyn Riggins. Two were named FCSAA All-State: First-team—Pitcher: Leigha Kirby and Second-team At-large: Zayla McBurrows. Chipola head coach Belinda Hendrix was named FCSAA Coach of the Year.
The Lady Indians are headed back to the NJCAA National Tournament to defend their 2019 title after missing that opportunity in 2020 due to the pandemic.
Panhandle Conference Pitcher of the Year, Leigha Kirby, who came on in relief in the fourth to earn the win only one run on two hits and struck out three to mover her record to 7-4 on the season.
Chipola also beat Central Florida (9-5) and Florida Southwestern (6-3) to make it to the championship game of the state tournament.
The Lady Indians will make their sixth consecutive appearance at the NJCAA National Tournament in Yuma, Arizona, on May 25-29. This is Chipola’s seventh trip in the last eight tournaments, and the ninth appearance for Head Coach Belinda Hendrix.