With one of the league’s top pitchers returning along with seven starters, the Bonney Lake High girls should be in good position to make a return trip to state.
If the Panthers reach the Class 3A tournament, it will be their third consecutive appearance.
In 2008, the Panthers surprised everyone and took fourth in state and defeated Kamiakin twice before falling to Everett.
Senior Caitlin Colvin, a hard-throwing rigth-hander, returns to the mound.
Colvin posted a 0.93 ERA while fanning 253 batters in 166 innings. She is also a threat at the plate and hit better than .400 as a junior.
Last season’s performance earned her an all-league selection and Pitcher of the Year honors in the South Puget Sound League 3A. She was a second-team all-state pick and has signed to play with Ohio University after graduation.
Another all-league selection, senior outfielder Eva Beal, is returning along with Kaylie Sherwood and Kim Courneya, both all-league honorable mentions in 2008.
Coach Dave Loveless said his squad will play “small ball” to move runners along and get them into scoring position. So far, his hit-and-run style has paid off for the Panthers.
The Panthers host North Thurston in nonleague play at 4 p.m. March 17 to begin the regular season.
Reach Dannie Oliveaux at email@example.com or 360-820-8209.