As the Mountlake Terrace Hawks prepare for the 2018 prep softball season, it might be a good idea for scoreboard operators in the area to get ready too as the Hawks are poised to put some big numbers up on those boards.
Terrace will get their first chance to light up a scoreboard this year on Wednesday, March 14, when they travel to Lake Stevens for a 4 p.m. match-up against the Vikings.
The Hawks scored almost 10 runs per game during the 2017 regular season. With 10 players returning from that squad, Terrace hopes for more of the same run production this year.
From what she’s seen during preseason practices, Terrace Coach Shannon Rasmussen is already anticipating plenty of offense from her squad.
“We’ve got 12 girls up on varsity right now and one-through-twelve are hitting,” Rasmussen said. “They’ve all come really prepared and they’re all hitting the ball really hard and doing a good job. That’s definitely going to be one of our strong points. I expect that we’ll be able to score a lot of runs.”
Seniors Jazz Zenk and Sammy Ruiz will look to lead the hit parade for the Hawks this year. The bats of Jamie Bingaman, Amaya Kaupp and Jenna Maxfield could also be hot throughout the season.
Zenk, Ruiz and Kaupp will return to third base, shortstop and first base respectively, giving the Hawk infield plenty of experience for 2018. Maxfield will again play center field, anchoring a strong seasoned crew out near the fences for Terrace.
The Hawks loss just two seniors – both pitchers – from last year’s team that was co-champions of the 2A/3A Wesco League South Conference, District 1/2 2A Softball Tournament titlists and qualifiers for the 2A state tournament. With the departures of Kira Doan and Gabby Calhoun, Rasmussen admits pitching is an area that gives her some pause.
“I wouldn’t say pitching is a weakness; it’s just the one question mark that I have,” Rasmussen explained. “I’m not sure who’s going to step up and get the bulk of our innings.”
Sophomore Kierra Scott had the most time on the mound last year of the squad’s returning hurlers. Laney Flynn, Sarah Davis and Kennedy Cooper will also share the pitching duties for the Hawks.
After all the success Terrace enjoyed last year, expectations are high for the 2018 campaign.
“We want to make it to state (the 2A State Tournament May 26-27 in Selah); it’s definitely a goal,” Rasmussen said. “They got a taste of it last year; they want to get back there. They know how fun it is and what an experience it is… They’re really motivated to get there again.”
Mountlake Terrace Hawks 2018 Softball
Coach: Shannon Rasmussen (sixth year)
First game: versus Lake Stevens, Wednesday, March 14, 4 p.m. at Lake Stevens High School
2018 schedule: https://www.wescoathletics.com/index.php?eptab=schedule&level_id=12&pid=0.3.40.15.320&rid=8934&school_year=2017-18&team_level=Varsity#ep_tab_content_schedule
–By Doug Petrowski