BRISTOL - A pair of stellar seasons resulted in both Bristol Eastern and St. Paul earning top-10 seeds in their respective softball state tournaments, as the brackets were released by the CIAC on Friday.
Led by star freshman pitcher Erin Girard, the Lancers finished the regular season with an 18-2 record and a CCC South Blue division crown.
That earned them the No. 4 seed in the Class LL tournament and a home game against No. 29-ranked Wilton. The 8-12 Warriors will travel to Bristol Eastern on Tuesday for a 4 p.m. meeting.
This year’s postseason outlook is much better than last year’s for the Lancers. In 2016, Bristol Eastern eked into the Class LL tournament with a 9-11 record, earning the bracket’s No. 27 ranking, and was promptly ousted by No. 6-ranked Amity.
With a higher seed and higher confidence, the Lancers will be looking for a longer run this time around.
The only other local softball team to reach the postseason is St. Paul. The Falcons won 16 games this season and earned the No. 9 spot in the Class S tournament.
Like their baseball counterparts, they will be hosting St. Bernard on Tuesday with a start time of 4 p.m. The Saints claimed the No. 24 seed by going 9-11 in the regular season.
St. Paul reached the second round of the Class S tournament a year ago, playing as the No. 15 seed with a regular season record of 13-7.
The Falcons beat No. 18-ranked Westbrook in the first round, but fell to No. 2-seed Thomaston in the next round.
Josh Kestenbaum can be reached at 860-973-1811 or firstname.lastname@example.org On Twitter: @K_baum30