Video: Top 10 Plays of the Week // Week 8
Steve Montoya and Chris Stonebraker tackle the best plays from the past week.
Four teams joined the Top 10 this week, but Hamilton (Chandler, Ariz.) held on to the top spot in the MaxPreps Xcellent Top 25 National Softball Rankings after running its record to 4-0 with another impressive win.
The Huskies were scored upon for the first time this season, but put up 12 in defeating preseason No. 2 Pinnacle (Phoenix).
The new Top 10 teams included 2017 MaxPreps national runner up Norco (Calif.) and Gainesville (Fla.), which jumped from No. 22 to No. 7. The week's biggest mover is King (Riverside, Calif.), which jumps into the rankings at No. 15.
Canyon (New Braunsfels, Texas) improved to 11-0 and is ranked No. 2 this week. Norco, which was 33-1 a year ago, sits at No. 3 this week after winning its first four games last week.
New to the Top 25 this week are Johnson (San Antonio), Bartram Trail (St. Johns, Fla.), O'Connor (Phoenix), Land ‘O Lakes (Fla.), Neshoba Central (Philadelphia, Ms.) and Hazel Green (Ala.).
As always the Dave Kops Tournament of Champions in Boulder, Nev., will get a lot of attention this week as a dozen schools ranked in MaxPreps Preseason Top 50 and many ranked in this week's Top 25 are competing. Among those are Hamilton, Norco, Los Alamitos (Calif.), West (Salt Lake City), Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.), O'Connor (Phoenix) and King.
MaxPreps Xcellent 25 National Softball Rankings presented by the Army National Guard
1. (Last week 1) Hamilton (Chandler, Ariz.), 4-0
With four starters batting over .600, the Huskies are hitting .492 as a team. The opponents, meanwhile are batting .184.2. (3) Canyon (New Braunfels, Texas), 11-0
The pitching strong Cougars added two more shutouts with 17-0 and 9-0 wins last week.3. (14) Norco (Calif.), 4-0
The Cougars went 4-0 to win the weather-shortened Dana Housley Memorial Tournament.4. (4) Marist (Chicago), 0-0
The season begins March 14.5. (5) Foothill (Pleasanton, Calif.), 1-0
The Falcons opened with a 5-1 win.6. (6) Cathedral Catholic (San Diego), 0-0
The Dons open their season Tuesday.7. (22) Gainesville (Fla.), 9-0
The Hurricanes got another superb pitching performance from sophomore Alissa Humphrey
, a two-hit, 20-strikeout performance in a 17-0 win. She also had five hits and drove in four runs. On the season, she is 8-0 and has allowed a dozen base hits and recorded 115 strikeouts in 50 innings.8. (8) Hurricane (W. Va.), 0-0
Hurricanes over the season Thursday.9. (12) Los Alamitos (Calif.), 2-0
Up next is unbeaten Santiago (Corona, Calif.) on Tuesday.10. (NR) King (Riverside, Calif.), 6-0
King beat last week's No. 7 Valencia, 2-0, in the Stu Penter Classic and with nine college signees should make a strong run for a long postseason. The signees include Alyssa Barela
(New Mexico State), Larissa Cesena
(Arkansas), Isabella Gargicevich-Almeida
(Boston), Mackenzie Meech
(Michigan State), Mikayla Ramos
(Iowa State), Aryanna Rivera
(St. Katherine), Brenna Smith
(Purdue), Breanna Villareal
(St. Katherine) and Megan White
(Skidmore). Smith's ERA has been 1.18, 1.48 and 1.64 in her previous three varsity seasons. Add sophomore pitcher Amiyah Aponte
and King has depth at every position.11. (24) Keller (Texas), 14-1-1
The Indians beat previously ranked No. 2 Colony twice last weekend and hasn't lost in nine games.12. (NR) Johnson (San Antonio), 14-0
The Jaguars have four starters hitting over .500.13. (13) East Carter (Grayson, Ky.), 0-0
Season opener is March 19.14. (17) Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.), 2-0
The Monarchs recorded a pair of wins in the Best of the West tournament.15. (15) Barrington (Ill.), 0-0
The Phillies' season opener is March 17.16. (18) Gahr (Cerritos, Calif.), 3-0
Gahr has allowed one unearned run in its first three games.17. (20) Eustis (Fla.), 7-0
The Panthers had a good week outscoring two opponents 36-0. 18. (NR) Bartram Trail (St. Johns, Fla.), 4-0.
Bartram Trail beat previously unbeaten Oakleaf, 8-4.19. (25) Katy (Texas), 19-1
Since losing 4-3 to Alvin (Texas), Katy has won 10 straight.20. (NR) O'Connor (Phoenix), 8-0-1
The Eagles have outscored their opponents, 72-18.21. (21) West (Salt Lake City), 0-0
West opens March 16. 22. (NR) Land O' Lakes (Fla.), 7-0Callie Turner
out dueled Melanie Rogers as the Gators handed River Ridge its first loss, 1-0. Turner allowed four hits and fanned 12 while Rogers allowed three hits and struck out 15. Ashley Smith
had the game-winning RBI.23. (23) King's Academy (Seymour, Tenn.), 0-0
King's Academy begins play on Tuesday.24. (NR) Neshoba Central (Philadelphia, Miss.), 8-0
Junior All-American Aspen Wesley
(Mississippi State commit) is 5-0, has allowed just three hits with 68 strikeouts in 31 innings.25. (NR) Hazel Green (Ala.), 5-0
The reigning state 6A champions return everyone from 2017 and have allowed one earned run.Dropped out:
Pinnacle (Phoenix), Ridge Point (Missouri City, Texas), The Colony (Texas), Oakleaf (Orange Park, Fla.), Fort Myers (Fla.), Valencia (Calif.), Barbers Hill (Mt. Belvieu, Texas).