Spanish Springs has been in the Northern 4A title game in each of the past six seasons, and on Saturday, it collected its third Nevada large school state championship in the last four years.
“It’s a huge accomplishment for our program,” fifth-year Cougars coach Jeff Davidson said. “The kids have just done a phenomenal job. They have come to practice and worked hard. When they get between the lines, it’s all business.”
Spanish Springs scored seven runs in the first inning and rolled to a 12-1 triumph over Damonte Ranch in the 4A state title game Saturday at the Hixson softball complex on the University of Nevada campus.
Senior shortstop Ashley Decker helped the Cougars to their first softball state crown in school history in 2007 and has been part of the recent four-year string of success.
“This one is definitely the best,” she said. “We have the best chemistry on this team. For my senior year, this is the perfect way to go out. I’ll never forget it.”
The Cougars wrapped up their championship campaign with a 33-1 record. The lone loss came in the second game of their spring season at a Sacramento preseason tournament. The Cougars lost 3-2 to Cajon High of San Bernardino, Calif.
The defeat was tough to swallow as the Cougars had the tying run on second base with Decker, their all-state leadoff hitter, who will play at Pac-10 power California next year, set to come to the plate. Unfortunately for fans of the Purple and Teal, the game was stopped at that point due to tournament time-limit rules.
The unlucky break cost the Cougars a shot at a perfect season.
“After that game we talked about being perfect the rest of the way and against all Nevada opponents, and today, we did that,” Davidson said, fighting back tears of joy in the postgame celebration.