Alto Lady Jackets softball team wins 16th consecutive district title

ALTO, TX (KTRE) - If you look at the track record of the Alto softball team, the list goes on and on.

That's after 16 consecutive district titles, 3 appearances as a state finalist, and 1 state title championship dating back to 1999.

With a winning tradition comes pressure to uphold that, and it's been felt be senior Carenza Johnson for four years now.

"As a freshmen there was a lot of pressure, and it's still a lot of pressure on us now." said Johnson. "When we step across the white lines, we just have to stay focused and stay dedicated to do what we got to do, to get the wins."

They're hoping to add a '14 right next to the '99 state champion number.

"I know I'm kind of hard on the freshmen, but I want to get the gold ring," said Johnson. "I want to go to state. We've been practicing hard all season so that's our goal. We want to go to state and win."

With a team that has only 2 seniors and 3 juniors, the rest are underclassman who rely heavily on the upperclassmen and their experiences in the playoffs for guidance.

"Our two seniors have been there. They've been through the playoffs and have seen more than anybody else, what its like," said Luke Balkom, Alto's head softball coach.

"There's a little bit of pressure, but the seniors really help us. We're really close and we've always played together," said Alyssa Duplichain, a freshmen on the team.

The last time these girls made the trip to state was back in 2009, and they believe the timing is right this year to load the bus, and head to Austin for another year.

"I think we got a great shot of going to state," said Jakamry Green, a sophomore on the team. ''We are a bunch of hard working girls, and we've worked hard to get to where we are now. If we make it through these playoffs, we can get there. I believe we can."

"We are one team, with one dream and our motto is go hard, or go home," said Dariyana Moore, a senior on the team.

With other districts wrapping up their seasons, the Lady Jackets at this time do not know who they will face in the playoffs. Since they won district, they will have a bye entering the playoffs.

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