White Plains ace Snider named 3A Pitcher of the Year as 8th grader
by NICK BIRDSONG
Jun 11, 2011 | 4011 views |  0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
White Plains’ ace Anna Snider went 36-7 in the circle.

She pitched 17 shutouts, struck out 229 batters and her ERA is a mind-boggling 0.70.

If that’s not amazing enough, try this on for size: She has yet to enter high school.

For her accomplishments, the White Plains eighth-grader was named named the Class 3A Pitcher of the Year alongside a first-team selection to the Alabama Sports Writers Association’s All-State softball team.

Among the six classifications, only three eighth-graders were selected; the other two were just honorable mentions.

“I did not expect this,” said Snider, who guided the Lady Wildcats to a fourth-place finish. “It’s fun to play high school ball. I’d be happy without all this success.

“I definitely give all glory to God and credit to my parents and teammates. I didn’t expect this to happen this fast — or at all for that matter.”

Snider’s athletic prowess has almost always been evident.

Her father, Eric, said she could dribble a basketball and catch a ball by 3. She picked up softball at 7 or 8 and dabbled at first-base before finding her home at pitcher.

Where she picked all that up from, though, he takes no credit whatsoever.

“Neither me nor her mother are very athletic,” Eric said. “It’s all God-given talent.”

White Plains coach Rachel Ford said she had no problems with putting the ball and the team’s fortunes in Snider’s right hand as a seventh-grader. She noticed Snider’s poise and passion for the game the day she tried out for the varsity.

“I don’t consider her an underclassman because of her mentality and her work ethic,” Ford said. “She’s working on pitching year-round and she’s puts so many hours in. She’s ready because of that. You can’t tell she’s an underclassman when she’s out there because of her demeanor. She keeps cool when the game gets hot. She acts like a senior.”

Snider is one 22 players from The Star’s coverage area to receive all-state recognition.

Her teammate junior third baseman Jordan Coleman was also selected to the first-team, after blasting 24 home runs to go along with 59 RBIs and 48 runs.

Despite Snider’s accomplishments and lofty recognition, she still shys away from going toe-to-toe with the slugger.

“You don’t mess with her,” Snider said of facing Coleman in practice. “She’ll send it over.”

The same could be said of Ragland’s Emily Church. The junior catcher was named the Class 1A Hitter and Player of the Year after guiding the Lady Purple Devils to their second consecutive state title, hitting 16 home runs along the way.

Church was one of four Lady Purple Devils to be named the first-team. She was accompanied by pitcher Sommar Wright, shortstop Madison Oliver, second baseman Kailey Echols. Spring Garden outfielder Jordan Sides received a first-team nod in Class 1A.

Cherokee County’s Kaitlyn Griffith belted 27 home runs as the Lady Warriors finished second behind Dallas County in Class 4A. She was named the 4A Hitter of the Year. Cherokee County pitcher Lauren Milsaps and Alexandria’s catcher Sara Borders and pitcher Bree Blevins were first-team selections as well.

Oxford’s Carlie Sargeant, Cherokee County’s Madison Milsaps and Candace Blanchard, Saks’ Taylor West and Kyla Goedde, Pleasant Valley’s Ashley Bryant and Spring Garden’s Tara Mullinax, Heather Smart and Zonna Forrester all received honorable mentions.

Nick Birdsong covers prep sports for The Star. He can be reached at 256-235-3575. Follow him on Twitter @birds_word.

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