Both ranked among the top 10 teams in the state heading into the final week of the regular season, the Flower Mound diamond sports teams have proven to be among the elite programs in Texas this season.
The baseball and softball teams are both at or near the top of the district 6-5A standings and have knocked off some heavy hitters along the way.
Softball coach Mark Larriba said he believes his team’s success this season can be attributed to a couple of factors.
“I think the girls have bought into the idea of playing as one,” Larriba said. “They back each other up, and they have fun, and they really do like each other as friends.
“We also have some great team leadership.”
Flower Mound finished with a record of 23-8 this season and second in the district standings.
Larriba said being ranked among the top 10 teams in the state is nice for his players, but said he tries not to put to much stock into the rankings.
“Rankings can be poisonous,” Larriba said. “People will look at the rankings, but they can’t really see who you’ve played. Some teams may have more losses than others, but they play nothing but ranked teams.
“It’s good recognition for the girls, but our thing is that we don’t look too much at the rankings. If you look too much at the rankings, you can become overconfident.”
Baseball coach Marte Amrine said he believes the rankings show that people respect what Flower Mound has accomplished this season, but agrees with Larriba that they are not the most important thing, and said that what really matters is how the team finishes up the season.
Amrine said he does believe that this team is capable of making a long run in the post-season this year, as well.
“We set pretty high goals, and as a program and as a team, we feel like we are one of the best teams in the state of Texas,” Amrine said. “We feel like we should be in Round Rock in June. We know that is a pretty big statement, but our kids are really talented.
“We play well together, and I think that if we stay focused and stay healthy, I think we have as good a shot as anybody in the state to be there.”
Amrine said he has been very happy with how well his team has managed to spread it around this season when it comes to production, both at the plate, and on the mound.
“I think probably the thing that has impressed me more than anything else this year is that it seems like every week, somebody different steps up,” Amrine said.
“Somebody comes out and has a great game and comes through for us.
“The focus of the team and the unselfishness has been admirable. We knew that we could get there, but the kids have really bought in and pushed themselves to get better each week.”
Flower Mound pitcher Steven Bruce has committed to the University of Oklahoma, and he said he believes the reason the Jaguars have enjoyed the success they have this year is primarily because of team chemistry.
“The team that we have has been together for four years,” Bruce said. “Our freshman year, we went 18-0. We knew back then that our senior year, we just wanted to win.
“Every one of the seniors on the team are best friends. I think that is part of what makes us good, is that we are always there for each other.”
Jordan Jennings has committed to the University of Dayton and said she feels that playing at Flower Mound and for Larriba has really helped get her ready to play at the college level.
“It has prepared me greatly,” Jennings said. “Coach Larriba has really taught me everything from my character, to how I hit the ball. He has just taught me great things about softball.”
The Flower Mound softball team will square off with Grapevine in the opening round of the playoffs in a best of three series, which will start at 7:30 p.m. on April 30.
The second game will be played at noon on May 1, and if a third game is necessary, it will be played at 7:30 on May 3.
All games will be played at Lewisville High School.
The Flower Mound baseball team will play its regular season finale at 7 p.m. on April 30 against Coppell at Flower Mound High School.