• November 27, 2020

COLLEGE SIGNINGS: Odessa High's Rayos, Aguirre sign to continue softball careers at Howard College - Odessa American: Oavarsity

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COLLEGE SIGNINGS: Odessa High's Rayos, Aguirre sign to continue softball careers at Howard College

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Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 8:34 pm

Odessa High seniors Abigale Rayos and Christabelle Aguirre have played softball together since they were 8 years old.

The duo ensured that they would continue playing together at the collegiate level Wednesday by signing to play at Howard College in Big Spring in a ceremony at the OHS Fieldhouse.

“It feels great,” Rayos said. “I’ve been waiting for this my whole life and praying and practicing for this moment and it feels awesome.”

“It just makes me happy to have that support from my family and teammates,” Aguirre said. “I just can’t wait to go play and continue my career.”

The two Lady Bronchos join a Howard College program that is coming off a Western Junior College Athletic Conference title as well as a Region V title last season. That success is part of what drew both players to become Lady Hawks.

“The coach (Kelly Raines) was looking for an outfielder and that’s what I wanted to be,” Rayos said. “They won the conference last year and I just want to be a part of that.”

“I really liked Coach (Raines),” Aguirre said. “She’s very nice and they have a strong program. I didn’t want to move that far away from home, also, and it’s good that it’s just an hour away from home.”

The teammates have both been integral parts of the Lady Bronchos program over the last three years. That was especially true last season as Odessa High made a run to the Class 6A regional semifinals for the second time in school history.

Odessa High head coach Rachel Pena brought up what happened in Game 3 of the area round series with Abilene High. Down 4-3 in the bottom of the seventh inning, Rayos drew a walk to lead off the inning before Aguirre came through with a two-run home run to send Odessa High through to the next round.

It’s just a small sample of what the two have meant to the program and Pena is thrilled to see both of them stick together.

“It means a lot and it’s definitely special,” Pena said. “You get to watch them grow as little kids, mature and then come to your program and be successful. It’s super special and I love both of them because they’re good kids.”

The signing ceremony was a chance for both players to look back on what they had accomplished to this point in their careers. It was also a chance to reflect on what is coming down the road.

“I love it,” said Aguirre of the opportunity to continue her career with Rayos, “I just love playing softball with her and it’ll just make things better.”

“It’s crazy how went from 8 years old to 18 now,” Rayos said. It’s an amazing feeling, honestly. It means a lot to represent home and I’m just proud to show out for my hometown.”

Before they get there, however, there is still one bit of business to take care of and that’s to finish the 2020 softball season as Lady Bronchos. With Rayos and Aguirre helping to lead the way, confidence is high that Odessa High can put together another strong team.

“I think we have a good chance to go further,” Rayos said. “We have a good team coming back and we have good attitudes. We’re just working to get better.”

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