Cape Fear Christian Academy’s varsity softball team completed a season of dominance in the Sandhills Athletic Conference with a 10-0 win in five innings over visiting Fayetteville Christian on Friday for the league tournament championship.
The Eagles went 6-0 against conference competition. A 13-4 win over Freedom Christian on April 15 was the only league encounter that was not decided on the 10-run mercy rule. Five runs in the bottom of the fourth set up an early closeout on Friday as Claire Parker pitched a one-hit shutout with five strikeouts.
CFCA advanced to the final because Village Christian could not play in the semifinals because of an extensive quarantine that sidelined half its team.
Fayetteville Christian (4-7) was the No. 3 seed for the Sandhills tournament and advanced to the final with a 6-3 win at second-seeded Freedom Christian on Thursday.
Seventh-grader Kristina Kennedy went 2-for-2 on Friday with three RBIs. Getting two hits and two RBIs each for CFCA on Friday were Mariah Bell and Kim Bordeaux. Cailee Ray had two hits and an RBI. Rhyleigh Horne was 2-for-3. Bekah Ennis, Parker and McKenzie Burris each had a hit.
The regular-season and tournament titles were the first league crowns for CFCA since the school played in the Carolina Christian 1-A Conference.
CFCA is the only 1-A school in the SAC. Fayetteville Christian is 3-A. The remainder of the league is comprised by 2-A programs.
Sterling Holmes of CFCA was named Sandhills Coach of the Year and Parker was accorded Player of the Year honors.
“The reason I won this was because of you,” Holmes told his team.
Receiving all-conference recognition from the Eagles were senior Anslee McLamb, Ray, Bordeaux, Horne, Bell, Ennis and Parker.
CFCA won the North Carolina Independent School Athletic Association 1-A softball tournament in 2019, the last time the event was played. Seedings and the bracket for this year’s state tournament are scheduled to be announced on Sunday.
CFCA will have Senior Day on Monday at 5:15 p.m. with a nonconference home game against Mintz Academy. That game, weather permitting, will follow a middle school contest with Mintz at 4 p.m.
The Eagles are projected to receive a first-round bye in the NCISAA tournament and play at home in the second round on Friday in conjunction with CFCA’s Homecoming.