by Meredith M. Griffith
This year’s team of lady Vikings is bringing “a lot of energy” and a strong desire to compete and win on the softball field this spring.
“We’re a pretty young team,” says coach Kevin White. “We’ve got 19 on the roster, and 10 of those are sophomores.” But that’s not stopping these young women from setting their aim on a district title win.
“We’ve got a couple of veterans helping to lead the charge and keeping the leadership intact,” said White. The team selected three captains to represent them this year: senior Alyssa Johns, senior Phaedra Osborn and sophomore Portia White. Sophomore pitcher Flora Lister is starting, backed up by pitcher Hazel Moe.
The Vikings played their third season game against Anacortes on March 20, losing 3-13. Their first game was a 13-3 loss to Mt. Baker, but the team rallied to take down Meridian 6-2 on March 16.
Kevin has been on Orcas just two years but has been coaching his daughter Portia’s softball teams since she was 5 years old, and he says they’ve been part of travel teams that have notched some state title wins.
Although the unfurling season involves games against “bigger, tougher” teams, Kevin says these Vikings are just getting warmed up. They’re strategizing on matchups and position plays to determine what’s going to work this season with this set of players. Playing teams on synthetic turf add an extra challenge for Orcas players, as the balls bounce true and rebound more quickly than they are accustomed to on uneven home fields.
“It’s fun. We’re having a good time,” Kevin told the Sounder. “There’s definitely a never-give-up attitude. They always fight to the end; they’re positive and ready to go.”
Upcoming home games are a doubleheader against Concrete at 12:45 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Saturday, March 30, and a game against Friday Harbor at 4 p.m. on Friday, April 5.