Top skipper takes over Enumclaw

The Enumclaw High fastpitch team, which contended at the Class 3A state tournament last season, lost second baseman Jill Parker to graduation and bid farewell to longtime coaches Loran Zenonian and Lee Reichert, but there are two silver linings in those dark clouds.

Jill Stewart will take her place on the mound once again for Enumclaw High’s fastpitch team.

The Enumclaw High fastpitch team, which contended at the Class 3A state tournament last season, lost second baseman Jill Parker to graduation and bid farewell to longtime coaches Loran Zenonian and Lee Reichert, but there are two silver linings in those dark clouds.

The Hornet girls picked up a new man at the helm in veteran skipper Mike Eckhart, who brings a new staff of assistants and a wealth of experience to the table. He was the fastpitch mentor at Sammammish High School for more than 15 years.

Second, the Hornets won’t have the vexing Auburn Riverside contingent to deal with, as those Ravens as well as the Auburn High School team moved on to the Class 4A designation.

“I know next to nothing about the teams in this league,” said Eckhart, who previously coached in the KingCo League where he earned 3A fastpitch coach of the year accolades in 2000, 2002, 2006 and 2007.

“I am sure going to be communicating with the gals on my team and I am confident that they will be more then happy to furnish me with a fantastic scouting report,” he said.

Enumclaw is returning enough of a nucleus from last season’s quality team, which went 12-2 in league, to be a force to be reckoned with.

The list of talent remaining from last year’s squad is extensive and begins with its all-SPSL 3A battery of senior catcher Ashley Dell’Osa and righty windmiller Jill Stewart. The added bonus with this tandem is that they provide a real power source at the plate.

Stewart is not the only arm in the Hornet arsenal. Austin Rogers returns as a junior with a couple of years of pitching experience under her belt, to spell Stewart once in a while.

Additionally, Enumclaw returns a jewel in shortstop Taylor Franich, who scorched basepaths around the league last year, stealing 35 bases during the regular season and also had a batting average looming around the .400 mark.

Weather allowing, the Hornets will get in a lot of early practice before their first league counter at 7 p.m. March 20 at the Boise Creek Sixplex against Bonney Lake.

Before then, Enumclaw will be involved in the Inglemoor Jamboree at 6 p.m. Friday and the Kentwood Invitational at 6 p.m. Saturday.

Reach John Leggett at jleggett@courierherald.com or 360-802-8207.

More in Sports

Sumner, Enumclaw sitting at 2-0; White River and Bonney Lake 1-1

Both the Sumner Spartans and Enumclaw Hornets continued their hot starts, while the White River crew picked up their opening win of the campaign.

Participation in sports, other activities, hits an all-time high in state | WIAA

Survey results, released Aug. 24, show that Washington high schools reported 175,783 students participated during the last school year, ranking 15th in the country.

Enumclaw High runners tackle Ellensburg Relays

The boys placed first while the girls placed second.

The season just started, but swimmers are already qualifying for the postseason.

The Enumclaw High swim and dive team opened the season in impressive… Continue reading

Hornets sting Sumner Spartans

The nonleague volleyball game ended with Enumclaw on top.

Spartans poised for another run through the SPSL 4A

The Spartans head into another season on the soccer field, looking to build upon the successes of last year’s squad.

Prep football roundup: Enumclaw improves to 3-0, others sit at 2-1

The Sumner Spartans fell to their Puyallup opponents 37-7.

Change in the North Puget Sound League

Enumclaw part of the league’s shift to three divisions, White River has new league neighbor.

In step with helping out

This was the third year the EHS track team worked to improve the trail at Nolte State Park.

Barrel racing honors memory of Enumclaw’s Christianson

Melanie died in 2013, but family and friends continue to organize the annual Melanie Christianson Memorial Race to honor her legacy.

Enumclaw’s Hooper a rising star in world of MMA

“The Teenage Dream” is currently undefeated, sitting on a 6-0 proffesional record.

Locals among 3-on-3 basketball winners

The annual pickup basketball game during Enumclaw’s Street Fair has grown in size considerably.