It took all season, but Southside finally reached the top 10.

The Panthers came in at No. 10 in Class 6A in the final Alabama Sports Writers Association’s high school softball rankings released Wednesday night.

After starting the season 13-13, Southside has gotten hot, going 17-1 in the season’s latter half to land in the poll.

The Panthers won 14 in a row (including an 11-9 win over Plainview, the No. 1 team in 3A, on April 14) before an 8-2 loss to Hatton on Saturday. However, Southside then came back to beat Cleburne County 11-6 and 8-1 Tuesday. It looks like the Panthers, who have had a lot of postseason success in recent years, could be gearing up for another playoff run, as they appear to be peaking at the most opportune time.

Southside will close out the season in the Plainview Spring Classic tournament Saturday.

The Bears remained the top-ranked team in 3A, having gone 3-0 over the past week. They will host Saturday’s tournament, and a showdown with Southside could produce another close result.

Despite going 5-0 over the past week, Cherokee County did not move up, holding steady at No. 7 in 4A. The Warriors are back in the fold as contenders after a few tough seasons.

In 2A, Collinsville and Sand Rock remained at Nos. 7 and 9, respectively. The Panthers went 3-2 over the past week, while the Wildcats posted a 5-1 record since the last rankings.

Here are the final ASWA high school softball rankings of the 2018 season:

 

CLASS 7A

1. Sparkman (33-4)

2. Baker (40-8)

3. Oak Mountain (23-11)

4. Spain Park (29-6)

5. Hewitt-Trussville (41-7)

6. Fairhope (29-5)

7. Thompson (39-7-1)

8. Buckhorn (21-14-1)

9. Vestavia Hills (32-19)

10. Tuscaloosa County (27-13)

Others nominated: Auburn (30-12), Bob Jones (26-13), Central-Phenix City (25-19-1), Enterprise (27-19-2), Huntsville (27-10), James Clemens (24-12), Smiths Station (20-12), Theodore (23-18-1).

 

CLASS 6A

1. Gardendale (40-6)

2. Hazel Green (32-9)

3. Daphne (37-10)

4. Northview (31-14)

5. Saraland (29-6)

6. Helena (26-9)

7. Brookwood (27-14)

8. Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa (25-6)

9. Hartselle (29-12)

10. Southside (30-14)

Others nominated: Athens (25-13), Austin (17-14), Fort Payne (24-14-1), Jasper (18-6), Pell City (28-12), Pinson Valley (16-19), Stanhope Elmore (23-18), Wetumpka (17-20).

 

CLASS 5A

1. Springville (34-6)

2. Hayden (32-7)

3. Alexandria (33-7)

4. Rehobeth (34-8-1)

5. Faith Academy (30-8)

6. Ardmore (26-7)

7. Scottsboro (22-11-1)

8. Mortimer Jordan (26-15)

9. Lawrence County (22-15-1)

10. Corner (26-15)

Others nominated: Demopolis (25-14), East Limestone (19-16), Eufaula (27-11), Jemison (23-8), Lincoln (24-17-1), Moody (24-15), Russellville (17-15-1).

 

CLASS 4A

1. Alabama Christian (36-8)

2. Wilson (38-3)

3. Holtville (32-10)

4. North Jackson (30-8)

5. Hale County (27-10)

6. Bibb County (19-9)

7. Cherokee County (28-6)

8. Northside (29-17)

9. Tallassee (29-11)

10. Madison Academy (24-7)

Others nominated: Central-Florence (16-14-2), Cordova (23-19), Danville (18-13-3), LAMP (16-9-1), Westminster Christian (15-13), Winfield (23-10).

 

CLASS 3A

1. Plainview (29-8)

2. Locust Fork (27-4)

3. Pisgah (27-9)

4. Prattville Christian (30-9)

5. American Christian (26-7)

6. Providence Christian (25-10)

7. Wicksburg (31-8)

8. Pleasant Valley (30-14)

9. Excel (26-9)

10. Lauderdale County (25-14-1)

Others nominated: Carbon Hill (26-18), East Lawrence (16-12-1), Elkmont (24-11-1), Geneva (25-17), Oakman (14-11), Slocomb (25-18).

 

CLASS 2A

1. Mars Hill Bible (31-12)

2. Hatton (38-10)

3. Lamar County (26-10)

4. Reeltown (26-9-1)

5. G.W. Long (25-15)

6. Leroy (25-5-1)

7. Collinsville (25-15)

8. Ider (24-17-1)

9. Sand Rock (20-12)

10. Cold Springs (18-10)

Others nominated: Ariton (25-14), Falkville (17-21), Fayetteville (13-11), Fyffe (15-9), J.U. Blacksher (14-8-1).

 

CLASS 1A

1. Brantley (38-4)

2. South Lamar (24-4)

3. Sumiton Christian (22-17)

4. Appalachian (20-7)

5. Spring Garden (23-12-1)

6. Kinston (14-12)

7. Sweet Water (17-13)

8. Pleasant Home (13-10)

9. Skyline (12-14)

10. Ragland (14-15)

Others nominated: Berry (17-12-1), Lynn (16-16), Meek (22-14).