The last piece of the Beeville softball program’s run to back-to-back state tournaments played her final game in a Lady Trojan uniform April 20.
Allie Estrada, who started as a freshman on Beeville’s 2018 state-qualifying squad, helped lead the Lady Trojans to a 15-0 three-inning victory over West Oso at the John R. Beasley Sports Complex.
“It’s pretty tough,” Lady Trojan coach Alan Burkett said through tears about how difficult it would be to say goodbye to the last link to those historic squads.
“Those were some great memories they had, that her and Jess had at second base,” he said, describing the bond Estrada and his daughter, Jessalyn, built as Beeville’s middle infielders during their time together in the program.
“She’s a special kid. She knows she is. ... She’s a special athlete who started four years at shortstop.”
Five other Lady Trojans – Gia Vela, Maggie Martinez, Aubrey Johnson, Zelda Salazar and Carolina Esquivel – also said goodbye to the program during the win.
“There’s a lot of important girls on (that list of seniors),” Burkett said.
“There’s Allie, she’s been around forever and played and sacrificed with bruises, blood, sweat, hours.
“There’s Gia, she’s worked her tail off just to make sure she plays.
“Then there’s Maggie, who didn’t get a lot of playing time, but she toughed out of every season and kept coming back.
“Then there’s Aubrey and Zelda. ... They got so much better. I wish they were juniors.
“Then there’s Caro. She filled some big shoes when Saleen (Flores) and (Aaliyah Ruiz) left. I’ll never forget those important games when she was a freshman, and she was just hungry – hungry to be successful.”
Esquivel picked up the win on the rubber for Beeville, allowing just one hit while striking out four in her two innings of work before exiting the circle for the final time in her career.
As a group, the six seniors, who occupied the top six spots in the batting lineup, accounted for 11 of the team’s 15 runs in the victory.
Johnson led off and scored once. She also had an RBI. Hitting second, Estrada went 1 for 2 and scored twice. In the three-hole, Vela was 1 for 2 and scored twice. Esquivel occupied the clean-up spot and went 1 for 2 with two runs. Martinez hit in the five-hole and had two RBIs and scored once. Salazar hit sixth and was 2 for 2 with three RBIs and three runs scored.
Asia Molina hit a triple and had an RBI and run scored, while Melina Ramirez went 1 for 2 with an RBI and two runs.
Mariana Martinez scored Beeville’s other run.
Beeville posted 10 runs in the first inning, then added two in the second and three in the third.
Molina’s one-out triple in the bottom of the third scored Salazar for the clinching run.
“It feels like it shouldn’t have gone any other way,” Burkett said about how it felt to go out with a victory. “It was good for the girls, good for the community, good for the program, good for the coaches.
“I’m just glad the girls have something good to remember about their last game. They were happy. They had a good time.”
Beeville finished the 2021 campaign with an 11-15 overall mark. The Lady Trojans posted a mark of 4-8 in District 26-4A play, finishing fifth in the district standings.
Rockport-Fulton 14, Beeville 0
The No. 1-ranked Rockport-Fulton Lady Pirates handed Beeville a five-inning loss on April 16 in Rockport.
Rockport scored twice in the second, 10 times in the third and twice in the fourth.
Beeville was limited to just two hits with Molina recording a double in the first inning and Johnson recording a bunt single in the third.
Paulina Esquivel took the loss. She gave up 14 runs – only four earned – on nine hits in four innings.