Lewis, Rawlings, Kindell headline Journal-News All-Area Softball Team

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Lewis, Rawlings, Kindell headline Journal-News All-Area Softball Team

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Badin’s Nicole Rawlings throws a pitch during a game against Ross on April 27 at Carl Schatt Field in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Rachel Lewis and Nicole Rawlings are the top honorees on the 2017 Journal-News All-Area Softball Team after leading their respective prep squads to a combined 50 wins.

Lewis, a senior shortstop from Lakota East, is the Position Player of the Year after an incredible campaign that followed a mostly lost 2016 due to an ankle injury.

The Northwestern University signee hit .604 with eight doubles, five triples, 11 home runs, 56 RBIs, 29 stolen bases and 59 runs for East, which posted a 24-5 record and finished second in the Greater Miami Conference.

Lakota East’s Rachel Lewis (second from left) high-fives teammate Brianna Castner during a meeting in the circle April 11 at Lakota West. GREG LYNCH/STAFF

Rawlings, a junior left-hander from Badin, is the Pitcher of the Year after a dominant season in the circle. She was 24-3 with a 0.97 earned run average, collecting 195 strikeouts in 173.2 innings.

At the plate, Rawlings was the second-leading hitter for the Rams with a .427 average, 11 doubles, four triples, three home runs and 32 RBIs.

Badin went 26-3 and earned a third straight trip to the Division III regional semifinals. The Rams won the Greater Catholic League Coed Central Division championship, their seventh consecutive league title.

Lebanon’s Brian Kindell is the Coach of the Year after leading his Warriors to the Division I state tournament for the fourth time in six years.

Posting a record of 30-4, Lebanon was denied its first state championship in a controversial finish at Firestone Stadium in Akron when Elyria scored two unearned runs with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Kindell marked his 300th career victory last season and has lost just 57 times in 13 years at the helm. The last time the Warriors didn’t win a Greater Western Ohio Conference division title was 2011.

Lebanon sophomore Kat Frank (right) listens to instructions from coach Brian Kindell in the seventh inning of the Division I state final June 3 at Firestone Stadium in Akron. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO BY BRYANT BILLING
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