All-State Softball: Medium, Small

Outfielder Zia Norris (left) of Rolling Hills Prep and pitcher/multi-purpose Hailey Dolcini of Fortuna both gained first team all-state honors for small schools. Photos: Courtesy family & Twitter.com.

Zia Norris (left) of Rolling Hills Prep and Hailey Dolcini of Fortuna both gained 1st team all-state honors for small schools. Photos: Courtesy family & Twitter.com.


Announcement of the 34th annual Cal-Hi Sports all-state teams for softball continues with honors for the best of the best among those from medium or small schools. Medium schools are those that were eligible for our Division III state rankings plus some that were Division II (outside of the CIF Southern Section). Small schools are those that were eligible for our Division IV and Division V state rankings. Some larger enrollment schools also were moved up from small to medium.

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There weren’t any schools that had three players chosen to the first team of this year’s Cal-Hi Sports All-State Medium Schools honor squad, but that wasn’t the case for the small schools.

Due to placing some schools that were in our D2 state rankings into the medium category, such as CIF North Coast Section Division II champion Alhambra of Martinez, that made it harder for Grand Terrace, the state’s No. 3 overall team from this year’s final rankings, to get a third player onto the medium schools all-state teams.

Ms. Softball State Player of the Year Nicole Bates wasn't the only top player for Ceres. Catcher Mahlena O'Neal also had a standout season (.479, 43 RBI, 9 HRs) and career. Photo: Dale Butler/Ceres Courier.

Ms. Softball State Player of the Year Nicole Bates wasn’t the only top player for Ceres. Catcher Mahlena O’Neal also had a standout season (.479, 43 RBI, 9 HRs) and career. Photo: Dale Butler/Ceres Courier.


The Titans’ leading two players, pitcher Melanie Olmos and junior shortstop Eliyah Flores, both easily were chosen for the first team and both also should get strong consideration for the All-State Super Elite teams (first 30 and second 30) that will be released later this week.

There did end up being room for the No. 1 teams in the final Division IV and Division V state rankings, unbeaten Paraclete of Lancaster and Rolling Hills Prep of San Pedro, to both get three players onto the Cal-Hi Sports All-State Small Schools first team.

Paraclete’s trio consists of Kailia Searcy, Taylor Roberts and Katylynn Johnson. Searcy, who ended her career with 58 home runs, and Roberts were both considered for the Small Schools State Player of the Year honor. Johnson went on at the end when it looked like Rolling Hills Prep was going to get three so her team could match.

The Rolling Hills Prep trio consists of Kaitlin Buff, Charlee Pond and Zia Norris. Buff and Pond were both on All-CIF Southern Section teams. Norris wasn’t, but she’s a junior committed to UCLA who batted more than .500 and as an outfielder became too hard to leave off. If you don’t know, outfielders for small schools has always been a problem to find very many strong all-state candidates because few tend to get chosen All-CIFSS or to any other local honor teams.

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