It has been a season of firsts for Bellarmine Prep’s fastpitch team.
First league title, first league tournament victory – and now, a first trip to the state tournament.
Led by 6-foot-2 sophomore pitcher Courtney Schwan, the Lions roared past Kentwood, 7-1, in the quarterfinals of the West Central Districts Class 4A Fastpitch Tournament on Friday at Sprinker Recreation Center in Spanaway.
But they’re not quite done with that list, said sixth-year coach Craig Coovert, whose team faces Emerald Ridge at 2 p.m. today. The Jaguars beat Skyview of Vancouver 5-3 in the quarterfinals.
“Now we’re aiming for a first district tournament title,” he said.
Schwan, who went 2-for-4 and drove in two runs, got Bellarmine on the board in the first inning with a two-run homer that set the tone for the rest of the game.
“Our goal was to have fun,” she said. “And we had fun – and hit the ball.”
Freshman infielder Becca Sorensen went 3-for-4 with a double and two RBI, and senior outfielder Kelly McLaughlin was 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI.
“It was nice to jump out right away, score runs early and put them away quickly,” Coovert said. “But they’re a good team and we never felt comfortable.”
Also advancing to state was Rogers, which scored 14 runs in the third inning in route to besting Kentwood 17-2 in five innings.
“That’s an unexpected win in the playoffs, but it’s awesome,” said coach Jacy Ramsey. “They really want to go to state, and they’ve got a lot to play for.”
Senior second baseman Courtney Johnston, who led off the bonanza of runs, said that her team came out ready to play. She expects the same today in the semifinals against Jefferson, which is headed to state for the fourth year in a row after beating Kentlake, 7-3.
“When it was 0-0 (entering the third), we were like, it might be a challenge,” she said. “But I have confidence in every single one of my batters.”
3A: Narrows League MVP Janessa Flynn pitched top-seeded Wilson into the state tournament with a 2-1 win over Prairie in eight innings. The Rams will next face Peninsula, which shut out Auburn Mountainview, 5-0.
“It’s like a dream come true right now,” said Flynn, who sat out last year’s postseason as a junior after tearing meniscus shortly before districts. “My adrenaline is like, whew.”
Senior right fielder Taylor Clark hit a home run in the fourth inning to get the Rams on the board, and senior shortstop Riley Jornlin closed out scoring.
“I’m so glad Riley hit the winning run,” Flynn said. “And (today) should be a good game. I’m excited – I just hope we hit better.”
Also advancing in 3A was Enumclaw, which defeated Yelm 7-2, despite hard hitting by the Tornados.
“They’re a good team, and you’ve got to come out,” said Yelm coach Lindsay Walton. “We hit the ball well – we hit it hard – but they had some great plays.
Enumclaw will next face Camas, which topped Bonney Lake, 12-2.
2A: Senior pitcher Kelli Crawford threw a one-hitter to send top-seeded Franklin Pierce to the 2A state tournament for a second consecutive year.
“It was a great first game,” head coach Jennifer Bruce said of the Cardinals’ 12-0 shutout of Lindbergh. “Kelli had a great game.”
Interlake earned its first-ever state berth with a 9-0 rout of Sumner, along with White River and Fife.