Hanna entered 2019 as one of the underdogs in rugged District 32-6A.
The Lady Golden Eagles reached the playoffs for the first time in six years, and calling the shots was second-year coach Greg Larson. He pulled the right strings to get Hanna to the postseason and has been named The Brownsville Herald’s 2019 All-Metro Softball Coach of the Year.
Larson has been at Hanna for eight seasons. He spent time coaching baseball before he made the switch to softball.
“This was a solid district, and we knew what we had to do in order to make the playoffs,” Larson said. “We had a core group of seniors that really wanted to make the playoffs, and they led the way for us and they were the ones that made it happen.”
Hanna always felt it had the pieces in play to make the playoffs despite the tough district schedule. Mixed in with some veteran experience, Hanna added a few young pieces to its puzzle.
“By the time the tournaments were over, we moved people around and put them in a spot to where we thought would work,” Larson said. “Coach of the year, it is a team award, and it just goes to show how hard the girls worked and did the things they needed to do.”
Looking back on the 2019 season, Larson recalled that the week of preparation for the playoffs was a special moment for himself and the program.
“The week before the playoffs, the kids took it up a notch,” Larson said. “We really competed with (Edinburg) Vela and (Harlingen) South, they were two of the tougher teams in the (Rio Grande) Valley. We went toe-to-toe with Vela in the playoffs and had an opportunity to win those games, but I was happy and pleased with the way the kids went out there and played.”