OKLAHOMA CITY — Coach Keith Coleman was numb from the excitement and so were his Muskogee High School Rougherettes.
“Words can’t explain the feelings I have right now,” he said.
He stood off to the side as his team celebrated after dumping Jenks 13-3 on the run-rule to win the Class 6A slowpitch state championship at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium on Tuesday night.
The victory completed a three-game sweep on the day as the Rougherettes powered their way to victories over Fort Gibson (14-6) and Westmoore (12-2). The win over Westmoore also was by the run-rule.
It is Muskogee’s first state championship since 2000 and the fourth overall. The other titles came in 1998 and 1983.
“We played three great games and beat three great teams,” Coleman said. “All coaches do this for kids and this is the ultimate prize for a coach. All of the credit goes to the players and my assistant coaches (Hal Sands, Heidi Flanary and John Hammer).
“I was playing college baseball in Tennessee the last time Muskogee won the state championship. This feels a whole lot better.”
What feels even better is this is the first time for Muskogee to reach the fastpitch and slowpitch state tournament in the same school year.
The Rougherettes, who finished the season at 36-7, jumped out to an 8-0 lead over Jenks in the first inning, fueled by a lead-off solo home run by Hannah Hamilton and a bases-loaded double by Hy-C Stancle.
Hamilton finished the day with six hits and two other home runs, hitting a three-run blast against Fort Gibson and a two-run shot versus Westmoore.
“It’s tough to play three games in one day, but we did what we had to do as a team,” she said. “We knew what we had to do to get here.”
After Jenks cut Muskogee’s lead to 9-3 in the top of the fifth, the Rougherettes came back with four runs as Madison Reed hit a bases-loaded single for the 12-3 lead and then Reed came home on Jordan Clark’s single to wrap up the championship.
“I had to get a base hit to get (Reed) in,” she said. “I’m too happy right now.”
Reed had six hits and six RBIs for the day.
“I can’t believe this. It hasn’t even set in yet,” she said. “It all seems so unbelievable right now.”
Shelby Winters (31-7) was the winning pitcher in all three games.
The championship game was the fourth time for the Rougherettes and Lady Trojans to play this season. Jenks won the first two games (7-2 and 4-3) and Muskogee won the last meeting (14-5) before the showdown for the title.
In beating Westmoore, Hamilton had four hits and Emily Emberson added a three-run first-inning home run. MHS led 6-0 in the first inning Hamilton’s two-run double in the fifth ended that game.
Others who helped in the win over Fort Gibson included Laura Fleck’s two hits and Kelsey Goss’ two hits and two runs scored.
Clearly, this day belonged to the Muskogee Rougherettes
Lacie Burch, the Rougherettes’ only senior, was happier for her teammates than finishing her high school career as a state champion.
“I’m really close to all these girls,” the Bacone College signee said. “I hope they’re happy like this next year.”