2012 Juneau-Douglas High School graduate Ashli Kikendall has left the Crimson Bears in good hands for next season’s run at the region and state titles, especially since two sophomores, headed into their junior seasons, have joined her on the Railbelt All-Conference team announced last week.
“That is amazing,” Kikendall said. “I never expected to receive something like this. This is so cool we had three players selected.”
Pitcher and first baseman Kikendall, second baseman/shortstop Andrea Gordon and pitcher/third baseman/shortstop Kayla Balovich joined Colony’s Devan Clark, Olivia Martin and Sage Stefanski; North Pole’s Taylar Holt and Samm Wood; Lathrop’s Salena Maxwell and Tina Persinger; and West Valley’s Shiana McLean and Dana Raugust on the 12-member Railbelt Softball All Conference squad.
Kikendall stated she was proud of the Crimson Bears, for being such a young team, going so far at state.
“It was pretty interesting,” Kikendall said. “It was kind of like I became the mom of the team, trying to pass on what I knew before I left.”
Balovich stated that the honor was surprising.
“It feels great,” Balovich said. “Going farther in state would have been awesome too, but I think we played well up there and showed we are competitors. I think the team feels great about next season. We are only losing one person, and Ashli Kikendall was a huge part of our team. She was a senior that did every thing for us. She was a big part of our team. I think we will be just fine and can pick up the slack. She will definitely be missed but I think we look really good for next season.”
Gordon said she felt very proud.
“It is a nice accomplishment,” Gordon said. “I am kind of surprised. I think since we are only losing one player, and she is a really valuable player, next year we will definitely be back and working harder. I think we have another really good chance to do well.”