First- and second-team selections for The News Tribune's 2018 All-Area softball team.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Brooke Nelson, Bonney Lake, jr. — Belted more home runs (21) this season than she allowed runs against her (17) in 150-plus innings pitched. The most dominant two-way player in the state, the UW commit carried the Panthers to a 3A state title behind a .756 batting average, 0.79 ERA and 306 strikeouts. Nelson is a three-time league MVP, formerly in the 3A SPSL and twice in the 3A PCL.
COACH OF THE YEAR
Andrew Sage, Bonney Lake — Coached Bonney Lake to its first state title in program history, which included a grueling 13-inning championship win over Snohomish — the longest title game in 3A history. The Panthers (26-2) won 3A PCL and 3A West Central/Southwest bidistrict titles, and posted 17 shutouts along the way.
Sidney Booth, Puyallup, jr. — Northwest Nazarene commit was the ace for a Vikings team that reached the 4A state playoffs for the third consecutive season. Fanned 139 in 100 innings pitched, posting a 13-3 record and 1.89 ERA. The 4A SPSL pitcher of the year helped herself out by batting .521 with six homers and 39 RBI.
McKenna Braegelmann, Stadium, soph. — Two-time 3A PCL pitcher of the year struck out 226 batters and compiled a 0.50 ERA, leading the Tigers back to the 3A state playoffs. Had a season-high 19 strikeouts against 3A state champion Bonney Lake during league play. Batted .551 with six homers and 33 RBI.
Danika Dennis, Tahoma, sr. — NPSL Cascade pitcher of the year posted a 1.48 ERA in helping guide the Bears to an undefeated division title. Splits time in the circle with time in the outfield, and hit .519, as Tahoma extended its streak of consecutive 4A state-playoff appearances to eight.
Drea Schwaier, Yelm, sr. — Pitched the Tornados to a runner-up finish at the 3A state tournament a season ago, and a third-place trophy this season with a 1.04 ERA and 213 strikeouts. Whitworth commit was named the 3A SSC MVP after leading Yelm to an undefeated league title, and posted a .402 batting average.
DiaVionne DeWalt, Gig Harbor, sr. — Split time between catcher, pitcher and outfield and recorded a .985 fielding percentage while batting .440 with 42 runs and 38 RBI — including nine homers. 3A SSC first-teamer at catcher is headed to Prairie View A&M (Texas).
Sophia Bjerk, Puyallup, sr. — Leader of the Vikings’ potent offense had a team-best .574 batting average, 40 RBI and 19 doubles. 4A SPSL MVP led Puyallup to undefeated league and 4A West Central/Southwest bidistrict titles. Will play in college at San Diego.
Brynn Nelson, Bonney Lake, fr. — The bigger the situation, the more clutch the freshman was. The younger Nelson paced the Panthers with four hits and two RBI in their extra-innings 3A state title win over Snohomish. 3A PCL first-teamer hit .581 with 34 RBI and 33 runs scored.
Megan Vandegrift, White River, sr. — 2A SPSL Mountain MVP will join another softball juggernaut in college in UW after an impressive four-year career with the Hornets. Vandegrift powered White River to a division title and eighth consecutive appearance in the state playoffs behind a .653 batting average, 10 homers and 29 stolen bases.
Rachel Wicker, Rogers, soph. — Iowa commit put together another productive season in helping the Rams return to the 4A state playoffs. 4A SPSL first-teamer hit .463 with 20 extra-base hits — eight home runs, six triples, six doubles. Wicker scored 42 runs and drove in 25.
Tayelyn Cutler, Yelm, jr. — Helped Yelm claim another trophy in the 3A state playoffs in the outfield, in the circle and at the plate, sporting a .441 batting average with 40 RBI and nine homers. The 3A SSC first-team pitcher struck out more than half of the batters she faced, fanning 150, and posted a 0.80 ERA.
Olivia Ellingson, Puyallup, soph. — Another offensive force for the Vikings who split time in center field and pitcher. Louisiana Tech commit hit .535 with 13 doubles, six triples and five home runs, and scored a team-best 46 runs. In the circle, the 4A SPSL first-teamer was 10-0 with 95 strikeouts.
Raelyn Kimmel, Bonney Lake, sr. — Four-time all-league selection — twice in 3A SPSL, twice in 3A PCL — for the state-champion Panthers moved around the batting order this season, posting a .486 average, scored 38 runs, knocked in 22 RBI and hit for the cycle. Robbed two hitters of homers with her range in the outfield.
Charity Sevaaetasi, Auburn, soph. — 4A NPSL Olympic MVP played catcher and third base for the Trojans, finishing with a .960 fielding percentage in 176 chances. Had a 1.142 slugging percentage and .500 batting average, while recording 37 RBI, 36 runs scored, 12 doubles and 11 home runs.
Raigan Barrett, Rogers, soph. — Standout shortstop for the Rams was a big threat at the plate, posting a .522 batting average and 1.144 slugging percentage. The UW commit belted 11 home runs,15 doubles and four triples. 4A SPSL first-teamer as an infielder matched 42 runs scored with 42 RBI.
Pitchers: Autumn Lee, Auburn Riverside, jr.; Maddi Pipitone, White River, sr.; Baley Porter, Eatonville, sr.; Caitlyn Rhoades, Auburn Mountainview, sr.
Catchers: Grace Goetsch, River Ridge, jr.; Rhilmina Sagapolutele, Kentwood, sr.
Infielders: Logan Breidenbach, Enumclaw, jr.; Lauren Forseth, Gig Harbor, sr.; Anna Hook, Bonney Lake, soph.; Lily Hope, Auburn Mountainview, sr.; Alexys Newman, Stadium, fr.; Hanna Scandiffio, Kennedy Catholic, soph.; Kiera Shipley, Tahoma, sr.; McKennah Ulrey, Puyallup, jr.
Outfielders: Emily Bartholomew, Auburn Mountainview, sr.; Samantha Domingo, Kentwood, sr.; Maddy Glasoe, Rogers, sr.; Kaylee Hazelwood, Tahoma, sr.; Anna Stewart, Gig Harbor, jr.; Karly Tiedeman, Auburn Riverside, soph.
Utility: Jaeden Ells, Yelm, sr.; Kaci Imus, Kentwood, soph.; Tatiana Leahy, Kennedy Catholic, jr.; Riley Stockton, Rogers, soph.