High school softball: Maci Bergeron, Baylea Brandon headline list of MaxPreps National Player of the Year candidates

Steve Montoya | MaxPreps.com Thursday, May 6, 2021 9:15am

Crowley catcher led Pioneers to state title while clubbing nation-best 30 home runs.

The high school softball season is over in some states, deep into playoffs in others, or if you're in New York, you could be in game three of your season.

That makes identifying candidates for MaxPreps National Softball Player of the Year a bit tricky. It also means others will emerge and this list is just kicking off the discussion. If you feel a player deserves to be considered, email steve.montoya@cbsi.com or follow on twitter @smontoyamp.

This initial list of 10 candidates includes a few recently-crowned state champions, a few who've completed their year, several in postseason play and one that still has nine more regular season games left to go.

Past MaxPreps National Player of the Year winners
2020 —  No award (Pandemic)
2019 — Sydney Supple, Oshkosh North (Oshkosh, Wis.)
2018 — Montana Fouts, East Carter (Grayson, Ky.)
2017 — Taylor Dockins, Norco (Calif.)
2016 — Caroline Hedgcock, Downers Grove South (Downers Grove, Ill.)
2015 — Tannon Snow, Chino Hills (Calif.)
2014 — Johanna Grauer, Amador Valley (Pleasanton, Calif.)
2013 — Casey Stangel, Lake City (Coeur d'Alene, Idaho)
2012 — Kenzie Conrad, Keystone (La Grange, Ohio)
2011 — Paige McDuffee, The Woodlands (Texas)
2010 — Kasey Fagan, Dunnellon (Fla.)
Graphic by Ryan Escobar
Softball Player of the Year Watch List

P Annika Litterio | Warren (San Antonio) | Sr.
The top pitcher for one of the best teams in the country has been dominant all season. The UTEP commit has a 0.23 ERA through 90 innings pitched. She's averaging just over two strikeouts per inning. The righty can also swing a bat with a .458 average with 27 RBI.

OF Baylea Brandon | Leander (Texas) | Sr.
If Brandon gets pitched to (29 walks), she is deadly with the bat. The LSU commit has 18 home runs and has two or more hits in 15 games this season. The powerful lefty is a major threat on the base paths as well as with 30 stolen bases.

P Emiley Kennedy | Lake Creek (Montgomery, Texas) | Sr.
The Texas A&M commit has not allowed an earned run this season in 84 innings pitched. The hard-throwing lefty has 168 strikeouts while allowing 18 hits in 299 batters faced. She's also hit 13 home runs.

UT Karissa Hamilton | Shelbyville (Shelbyville, Ind.) | Jr.
In 18 games, the Kentucky commit has 18 home runs while batting .719 with 45 RBI.

P Kylie Chung | Westlake (Westlake Village, Calif.) | Sr.
With the CIF Southern Section announcing spring playoffs will happen, the state of California will have a player up for Player of the Year consideration. Chung, a Stanford commit, is batting .471 with four home runs. She's also 8-0 in the circle with a 0.77 ERA.

C Maci Bergeron | Notre Dame (Crowley, La.) | Jr.
She led the Pioneers to another state title this season after smashing a nation-best 30 home runs. The LSU commit has hit 62 career bombs. She also drove in 70 runs and has 174 RBI in just two full seasons of play.

P Madi Ogden | Williamsburg (Ohio) | Sr.
The Morehead State University commit has thrown seven no-hitters this season, per Mike Dyer of WCPO in Cincinnati. The 18th-ranked Wildcats have yet to enter stats on MaxPreps.

OF Nyjah Fontenot | Barbe (Lake Charles, La.) | Sr.
Led her team to a Louisiana Class 5A state title. The Arkansas commit hit 11 home runs and batted .530 this season. Her junior teammate Halie Pappion is in the running as well after finishing 19-1 in the circle.

P Paige Kilgore | Houston (Miss.) | Sr.
The Southern Miss commit has been pitching at the varsity level since she was in seventh grade. She went 22-0 in the circle this season and struck 247 batters. She has 817 career strikeouts and a 95-6 overall record.

SJ Geurin | Leander (Texas) | Sr.
The Oklahoma commit is the ace for the top-ranked team in the country. In 81 innings pitched, Geurin has struck out 223 batters and has allowed 11 earned runs.