Delafuente commits to Panhandle State softball team

The Lady Winds scored 11 runs in their first inning of play against Sudan on April 12, 2022. (Ryan Crowe/FCR)

GOODWELL, OKLA – Clarissa Delafuente of Floydada will take her big smile and love of softball to play collegiately for the Oklahoma Panhandle State University Aggies. Delafuente has made a verbal commitment to the Aggies and is scheduled to sign a national letter of intent on July 11 at the Massie Activity Center according to her father Gabe Delafuente.

This is one of those feel good success stories where Delafuente missed her junior season in softball due to a severe knee injury in her last basketball game of the 2021 season, and rebounded very strongly in her senior campaign at shortstop while still wearing a knee brace.

Delafuente has received some nice post season recognition following the Lady Winds season with a 32-5 record and advancing to the Region 1-2A Semifinals. Earlier this week she was named Honorable Mention on the Lubbock A-J’s Softball Super Team, plus she was previously selected as the District 3-2A Offensive Player of the Year on the All-District team.

“Clarissa was the ‘sparkplug’ of this year’s team. She was an excellent leadoff of our lineup. She could hit for average, lay down a sacrifice bunt to advance her teammates, and could bunt to get on base with her speed. Clarissa played with a lot of energy and was a great leader by example. She is a neat kid with great character,” described Floydada softball coach Armando Morales.

Many followers of the Lady Winds this agreed about Delafuente as the ‘sparkplug’ with her speed and risk taking style of play on the base paths and defensively. Delafuente was an exciting leadoff hitter in the Lady Winds lineup where she had a solid .642 on base percentage. She manufactured many of her 21-doubles by stretching numerous singles into an extra base with aggressive capability of running the bases. Delafuente lead the Lady Winds with 34-stolen bases which played a big part of being the second leading scorer of 61-runs.

Delafuente will be joining a successful softball program at Panhandle State that had a 35-12 record in 2022, including a 22-8 mark for a third place finish in the Sooner Athletic Conference (SAC). The SAC is a NAIA affiliation that has nine schools playing softball across Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas. The member schools are Central Christian in Kansas; John Brown, Langston, Mid-America Christian, University of Science and Arts, and Oklahoma City all from Oklahoma; Texas Wesleyan and Southwestern Assembly of God in Texas. Wayland Baptist is starting up softball and will be competing in the SAC along with its other sports.

“There is no doubt Clarissa can play at the next level. I think she could play shortstop, second base or any of the outfield positions due to her speed and athleticism,” Morales added.

Delafuente will be the third Floydada Lady Wind to move up to the collegiate level of softball from the 2022 team as catcher Marissa Obregon has signed with Northland College in Ashland, Wisconsin and second baseman Kailee Sanchez will be playing for Frank Phillips Junior College in Borger, Texas.

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