Just four games into the 4A Grand Canyon regional softball season, it's obvious the road to the championship passes through Flagstaff. The Eagles have won six consecutive regional championships by relying mostly on timely hitting and exceptional pitching.
Flagstaff's mound ace, Rhiannon Baca, is as good as they come.
Of course, the Lady Horns have an ace of their own -- Brenna Zumbro.
The Eagles have two narrow wins over the Lady Horns this season. The first Flagstaff victory, a 5-1 decision was recorded March 27 at the Pepsi/Albertson Invitational Fast-Pitch Tournament in Kingman. The Eagles second win over Payson, by a 1-0 measure, was posted April 1 in Flagstaff.
The only victory that will go down in the all-important regional standings is the regular season meeting April 1.
The competitiveness of both those games probably means the second regular-season meeting between the Horns and Eagles, April 22 on PHS softball diamond, could turn into the mother of all softball wars.
If both teams keep winning, the results of that Rim country skirmish also might decide the eventual Grand Canyon champion.
Payson fans should mark their calendars and turn out en masse April 22 to provide plenty of good old-fashioned home cookin' for the visiting Eagles. The game promises to be what high school sports should be about.
PWGA seeks new members
The Payson Women's Golf Association has picked up one new member, but is looking for at least one more. At 9:30 a.m. this morning (Tuesday), the members of the PWGA met for a kickoff breakfast at Tiny's Restaurant. Following the meal, the association played its first tournament at the season at Payson Golf Course.
For more information about the PWGA or to join the organization, call Alesha Calderwood at (928) 474-1446.
Run for fun, cash
For the first time in the history of the event, the Payson Area Habitat Home Run 5K will offer cash prizes to the overall top three male and female finishers. First place is worth $100 and second place finishers receive $50. Third place runners earn $25. Medals will also be awarded to the top three men and women in each age category. All racers also are entered in a raffle.
The 5K will be May 15 at Green Valley Park. The annual event, which draws both walkers and runners, will start at 8 a.m. Registration and T-shirt pickup begins at 6:30 a.m. Immediately after the run, until about 10 a.m., a pancake breakfast and awards ceremony will be held in the park. The registration fee is $15 if paid before May 7. After May 7 and on the day of the race, the fee is $20. The registration fee includes participation in the race, an event T-shirt and breakfast.
Guest breakfast tickets will be available on race day for $3. Children's tickets are $1.
In addition to the breakfast and run, there will be free family activities on-going in the park.
Walkers and runners will compete in one of eight age/sex divisions beginning with 12-years-and-under and continuing to 70-years-and-older.
The event is held each year to benefit the Payson Area Habitat for Humanity and its mission to build affordable housing in the Rim country.
Registration forms are available at the Payson Athletic Club, 400 E. Highway 260 or the PAHH offices at 1013 S. Goodfellow Road. Call (928) 474-0330 for more information.