Comets’ Coniglio & Western, Rebels Millet and Garcich named to 3A and 2A All-State teams

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Sports Editor

2008 was a banner year for both the St. Charles and Riverside softball teams. Each went deep into the postseason, with the Comets winning it all.

The Comets and the Rebels are both well represented on this year’s Class 3A and 2A All-State softball teams.

St. Charles’ Courtney Western and Lauren Coniglio and Riverside’s Marci Millet and Heidi Garcich all were recognized as among the state’s elite this week by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association, capping off a memorable season for each of the four athletes.

Western, a sophomore pitcher, was phenomenal in the Comets’ postseason run. She struck out 27 batters in 17 innings at the state softball tournament in Sulphur, earning two wins and a save in that span, including the 2-1 victory over Parkview in the final game, where her game-winning RBI grounder scored teammate Jessie Braud to clinch the title.  

Her 0.80 ERA and 163 strikeouts in 130 innings spurred her to a 16-4 record in 2008. At the plate, the Comets’ leadoff batter was just as formidable, as her .440 batting average attests to.

“The only way to really describe her is that she’s just a winner,” said St. Charles coach Ty Monica. “She fought through injuries all season. She just wants to compete for every single pitch.”

Coniglio, a senior catcher who has signed with Southeastern, is making her third straight appearance on the All-State team after making it as a sophomore and a junior in 2007. She came through in the clutch for SCC as well. Her two-run home run in the state quarterfinals helped lift St. Charles over Buckeye, 3-2.

Coniglio hit .284 this season with three home runs, while leading her team in slugging percentage and walks. She was also a force behind the plate, as most teams thought better of testing her arm on the basepaths.

“I don’t know that she allowed even three steals this year,” said Monica. “It wasn’t just what she brought on the field to us, but the intangibles. She brought confidence to our whole team, everyone knowing she was going to touch the ball after every pitch.”

    Millet, a senior shortstop, makes her first appearance on the All-State team after a season in which she led the Rebels to a berth in the state semifinals. On the way, she hit .414 to go with 27 RBIs, and made numerous defensive plays at short to keep her team in important games.

    Millet, who has signed to play at Nicholls State, hit third for Riverside, and was always a threat for the extra base hit, with 23 of them in all, including three home runs.

    “Some may play shortstop as well as Marci, but none are better,” said Riverside Coach Mickey Roussel. “She was our leader, and she did it by example. As far as a student-athlete goes, she sets the mold.”

    Garcich, a junior pitcher and centerfielder, makes her second appearance on the All-State team. She hit .585 leading off for the Rebels, by far the highest average on the All-State roster.

    Garcich split time between centerfield, where she was All-State in 2007, and at pitcher, where she went 11-6 with a 1.55 ERA. Late in the season, she suffered an injury, and when teammate Chelsey Stein stepped up on the mound, she returned to the outfield.

    “She’s no doubt the best centerfielder in Class 2A, maybe in any classification,” said Roussel. “We took her out of her comfort zone in the outfield because we needed her to pitch, and she never complained, no moaning or groaning. She’s very unselfish, a team player, and she had a special year.”

    Lutcher’s Megan Waguespack and Katie Ocmond each were named as honorable mention.