Here’s our softball preview. Here’s a feature on Steilacoom standout Marki Creger-Zier, who will play at the University of Washington next year.
And here are four story lines to follow
1. Can a 4A West Central District team end the state title drought?
It’s been eight years since a team from the West Central District has reached the softball state championship game. Since Kentridge won the title in 2002, teams from KingCo (4), Greater Spokane League (4), Greater St. Helens (5) and WesCo (1) have dominated the final round.
2. Stadium, Wilson are Narrows League favorites
Stadium and Wilson are again the teams to beat in the Narrows League. Last season, both won regular season division titles before the Rams nipped the Tigers 2-0 in the league tournament. Stadium has the services of junior P Heidi Wells, an All-Area selection who averaged 11.5 strikeouts per game as a sophomore. Wilson will rely on a youthful, yet talented, battery of P Janessa Flynn and C Taylor Clark.
3. Puyallup, Rogers the class of SPSL South
The SPSL South is shaping up to be a two-team battle between Rogers and Puyallup. The Rams rolled to the West Central District title last season behind the pitching of All-Area selection Bobbi-Jo Schaapveld and the senior has been dominant this year, winning her first five games. Puyallup P Kelsey Robinson, a junior, has electric stuff and gets support from All-Area IF Kylie McChesney. The teams have their first meeting on April 13.
4. Tumwater eyeing another state title run
Tumwater is loaded for another deep trip into the postseason. All but two starters are back for the Thunderbirds, who reached the state semifinals last year, and will be anchored by all-state OF Amanda Deck, P Chelsea Felton and C Katie Blomgren.