Spring sports preivew: Sequim fastpitch squad looks to continue winning tradition

Spring sports preview: Fastpitch

Head coach: Tim Lusk (first year); JV coach Mark Knudson

2016 finish: 21-6 (8-3, third in Olympic League); 6-3 in playoffs; 2-2, seventh place at state 2A tourney

Top returning players: Jordan Bentz (sr.), Chloie Sparks (sr.), Adrienne Haggerty (sr.), Nicole Anders (sr.), Shelby Jones (jr.), Isabelle Dennis (so.), Raelynn Opdyke (so.), Bobbi Sparks (so.)

Newcomers: Jessica Dominguez (jr.), Madison Nute (so.), Latisha Robideau (so.), Shelby Wells (so.)

Sequim’s fastpitch squad is looking for history to repeat itself under new leadership.

The Wolves look for their seventh consecutive state tourney appearance this spring, led by new head coach Tim Lusk.

Sequim has four seniors on the squad in shortstop Jordan Bentz, third baseman Chloie Sparks and outfielders Nicole Anders and Adrienne Haggerty.

Bentz was an all-Olympic League first team infielder and Sparks was named to the second team.

Lusk, an assistant with the Wolves the past two seasons, said he likes what he sees in preseason practices this spring.

“We’ve got a good, solid team atmosphere, lots of hustle and fighting for positions,” he said.

Lusk said that instead of relying on one pitcher he expects junior Shelby Jones and sophomore Isabelle Dennis to split time on the mound.

“They complement each other,” Lusk said.

The Wolves placed third in the Olympic League last season behind league champ Port Angeles and runner-up Olympic, then went 6-3 in the postseason, including two wins at the class 2A state tournament. Some key pieces from that squad are missing, however, with all-Olympic League first-teamers McKenzie Bentz (pitcher), Emily Copeland (catcher) and Allysen Montelius (outfield) graduating.

Still, Lusk expects Sequim to be among the league’s top teams come May.

“I can see this team making districts and (getting) back to state,” he said.

Sequim was scheduled to open its season at home against Chimacum on March 13.

The Wolves are at Nathan Hale on March 16. They play a doubleheader in Anacortes on March 18, taking on Sehome in the first game and, in a rematch of a 2016 state 2A tourney game, Sequim plays Lynden in game two.

The Wolves are at Klahowya on March 20 before hosting North Mason on March 22.

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