Spain Park, Thompson, Helena represented on softball North-South All-Stars roster

Published 9:39 am Wednesday, May 24, 2023

By ANDREW SIMONSON | Sports Editor

Four players from three Shelby County area schools were selected to the 2023 North-South Softball All-Star Game rosters when they were announced on Monday, May 22.

Spain Park’s Maggie Daniel and Ella Ussery, Thompson’s Laney Williams and Helena’s Presley Lively all received spots of the North team’s roster.

Only rising seniors for the 2023-24 academic year were eligible to be selected, and the teams were chosen by coaches and athletic directors from across the state of Alabama.

The game will be a doubleheader at Lagoon Park in Montgomery on July 19.

The Spain Park Jaguars were honored with two selections to the North All-Star team.

Ella Ussery was selected as both a pitcher and first baseman. She was the Jags’ first choice in the circle, pitching 165 innings with a 20-9 record. She posted a 1.78 ERA and averaged just over one baserunner per inning with her 1.05 WHIP.

Maggie Daniel served as the backstop for the Jaguars, and now she will represent the North as a catcher in the All-Star game. She was a crucial part of Spain Park’s lineup that reached the 6A regional tournament.

Thompson catcher and second baseman Laney Williams will represent the Warriors in Montgomery. She was a big reason why the Warriors made it to day two of the 7A state tournament, batting .433 on the season with a .633 slugging percentage and 1.140 OPS.

In addition, Williams drove in 30 runs in 2023 and only got caught stealing once, going 16-17 on the year.

Helena’s Presley Lively dominated during her junior year in center-field. In 142 plate appearances, she posted a .535 average, .602 on-base percentage, .697 slugging percentage and a whopping 1.300 OPS.

Lively scored 65 runs off her 76 hits and drove in 31 more, and she was almost automatic on the base paths, stealing a base 67 times in 71 tries.

Lively was a crucial part of a Huskies lineup that reached the 6A state tournament and were perfect in the area and regional tournaments.