18-4A Softball: Maidens, Lady Eagles jockeying for playoff positions

Apr. 15—The regular season is set to come to a close Tuesday night when Jacksonville travels to Madisonville, Rusk visits Bullard and Palestine hosts Hudson's Lady Hornets.

Nevertheless, a lot is on the line for Jacksonville and Rusk.

The Fightin' Maidens (18-12, 5-4) and the Lady Eagles (19-11,5-4) are tied for third place in the conference standings, with each club having a win over the other.

The Fightin' Maidens will visit Madisonville (11-19, 0-8) Tuesday, while the Lady Eagles will entertain Bullard (23-6-1, 9-0), who has already clinched the conference championship.

If both teams win Tuesday, a playoff seeding game would have to be played later this week to decide who represents the loop as the third place team, and who will go to post season as the No. 4 team.

A Jacksonville win, along with a Rusk loss, would make the Maidens the third place team and the Lady Eagles the fourth place squad.

A Maidens' loss coupled with a Rusk triumph over Bullard, would result in Rusk earning third place and Jacksonville going to the playoffs as the No. 4 seed.

District 18-4's third place team should have a less taxing playoff road to travel. The No. 3 team from District 18-4A would take on Henderson (20-9, 7-2), the District 17-4A runner-up in the first round, while the No. 4 team from 18-4A, would have to battle Gilmer (18-10-2, 9-0) in the District 17-4A champion, in bi-district.

Hudson (11-14-0, 6-3) is only one game in front of Jacksonville in the standings; hence should Palestine (11-15, 1-7) upset the Lady Hornets Tuesday, and Jacksonville defeat Madisonville, Jacksonville and Hudson would be tied for second place, as the two outfits split their regular season meetings.

Should that scenario unfold, a playoff seeding game for second/third place would have to be played later this week.