Leaving Her Mark: Deer Park's Applebe ready for senior season
STANDING ON THE EDGE OF THE DUGOUT AT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS’ RED & CHARLIE MCCOMBS FIELD ON A WARM JUNE NIGHT WAS MADISON APPLEBE.
The then-junior watched as the final pitch from Deer Park starter Hannah Benavides was popped into the air and reeled in by Tabby Bailey in centerfield to seal a 1-0 win over Converse Judson for the Class 6A State Championship.
Before the ball was even caught, Applebe and the rest of her team had already started pouring out of the dugout onto an eventual dogpile at midfield.
“It was unreal because nobody thought we could do it,” she said. “So, when it happened, we were just like ‘we did it’.”
Now, the University of Central Florida-commit is back for her senior year and as the savvy veteran of the staff. But her job is more than about just getting a new number in the win column every night.
“I think my job is not to just get us wins but is to teach the other three pitchers on the staff,” Applebe said. “Teach them how to carry themselves and shake things off.”
Last year’s title for Deer Park was its third in program history but first since 2014. Now, the Lady Deer will try and build off what they accomplished as a group in 2021 and hope they have laid the foundation for years to come.
“We changed the culture and that represents how we all came together and did it ourselves,” Applebe said about last season. “We all played for each other