White River Fastpitch: Hornets break out for first league win

White River High’s fastpitch squad broke through in a big way, winning its first league contest and taking two out of four games, ending up in possible contention for a postseason spot.

The Hornet girls started barely losing, 5-3, to Auburn Mountainview April 20, but April 21 saw WRHS bust out of its long slump and throttle Lakes 8-1.

By April 22, the Hornets found the sledding tough against Franklin Pierce as they were blanked 4-0 by a competitive Cardinal crew.

“It was pretty exciting when we won our first league clash of the season against Lakes, but I told the girls I believe in them and honestly expect them to win every time we step off the bus,” an optimistic White River skipper Joe Sprouse said.

Then Thursday, the Hornets played some tenacious defense and shutout Peninsula 1-0 to bolster their South Puget Sound League 3A mark to 2-8.

“We played great defense all week and it kind of culminated against the Seahawks, when our pitcher, Sara Steinmetz, tossed a complete game shutout without striking out a single opponent,” Sprouse said. “Now that’s playing some defense.”

Hitting-wise, it has been White River sophomore catcher Brook Paulson who has spearheaded the offense. She is hitting .333 and is a reliable force at the plate.

The Hornets will have a tough row to hoe during the remainder of the regular season, as they play Bonney Lake, Sumner and Enumclaw in their final three encounters. Sprouse maintains if his troops can find a way to prevail over Sumner at 4 p.m. Tuesday on the Hornets’ home field, and a few other things fall into place, he is confident the Hornets can land the fifth playoff seed and head into the second season.

Reach John Leggett at or 360-802-8207.

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