Archive for the ‘Softball’ Category

Marina Slowik crushes a shot on the links. (Photo courtesy Gina Slowik)

One island, two state champs.

While Coupeville celebrates Alex Murdy’s triumph in the long jump, South Whidbey also had a chance to see one of its track athletes ascend the podium at the state championships.

Falcon junior Naomi Atwood hit the tape first in the 800, wearing the crown at the 1A meet.

Fleet-footed Falcon Naomi Atwood dashes to a state title. (Emmy Atwood photo)

That victory headlines our look at how Coupeville’s league rivals, past and present, and its next-door neighbors did during the final week of the spring sports season.



Mount Vernon Christian, which shared the Northwest 2B/1B League crown with Coupeville, won two of three games at state, falling 4-2 to Naselle in the 1B title game.

The Hurricanes bounced Sunnyside Christian 4-1 and Liberty Christian 9-4 to get to the finale, which, thanks to weird Eastern Washington weather, was played at two different locations.

The game started in Ephrata, before being moved to Wenatchee after rain and lightning arrived.

After a four-plus-hour break, Naselle bounced back from an early 1-0 deficit to win its second straight title.

Over in 2B, second-seeded Toutle Lake, which eliminated Coupeville in the quarterfinals, was bit by the upset bug, as was #1 Brewster.

Instead, #4 Tri-Cities Prep claimed the title, beating #11 Adna 5-4 in a game that was, wait for it, started in one location, and finished in another thanks to weather.

Others winning titles include former Coupeville Olympic League rival Klahowya in 1A, and my alma mater Tumwater in 2A.

The T-Birds have gone back-to-back with former Major League Baseball star Lyle Overbay as coach, and the winning hit came off the bat of Brayden Oram, who I assume is the son of Jon Oram, a freshman when I was a senior at THS.

The biggest bang came in 4A, however, as Eastlake rolled to a title under the direction of coach Frank Smith.

He’s an Oak Harbor grad who played high school baseball for Hall of Fame coach Jim Waller in the early ’90s.

Eastlake baseball celebrates a state title. (Photo courtesy Frank Smith)


Girls Tennis:

Coupeville’s Helen Strelow played three matches at the 2B tourney, advancing to day #2 before bowing out, but I’ve already written full stories about her.

One other note of local interest was South Whidbey sending its doubles duo of Pearl Buck and Mikaela Nelson to the 1A tourney, where they fought hard before falling 6-4, 6-3 to a pair from The Bush School.



Coupeville hasn’t had any duffers since Austin and Christine Fields graduated, but the other Whidbey schools operate full programs, and both sent players to the big dance.

South Whidbey’s Ryder Mulcahy finished 19th in the 1A boys battle, while teammate Henry Olsen and Falcon female ace Parker Forsyth both failed to make the cut after day one.

Oak Harbor’s Tobias Wood placed 31st in the 3A boys’ tourney, while Addison Nations finished 34th in the girl’s rumble.

The Wildcats qualified their entire girls’ team, with Reagan Syring, Hailey Jenzen, Scarlett Nations, Marina Slowik, and Annalise Wesley competing on day #1.

While all of the OHHS golfers contributed to a strong season, one has a Coupeville connection and gets extra props.

Slowik’s mom, Gina (Dozier) Slowik, was a Videoville employee way back in the day.

When I got hired to start my 12-year run of mainlining Reese’s Pieces and VHS tapes, it was because she was headed off to college, opening up a spot behind the counter.

Marina’s aunt, softball sensation Laura “L-Train” (Crandall) Dozier worked for Miriam’s Espresso, as well, when that business shared a storefront, and owner, with Videoville.

And Laura’s future husband, legendary Coupeville basketball hype man Steven “Cash Money” Dozier, who is also Gina’s brother and Marina’s uncle?

During his high school days, he drank so much Italian soda syrup at Miriam’s, his blood once tested out at 98.3% sugar.

True story.



Darrington, which finished 3rd in the Northwest 2B/1B League, was the lone conference school to make it to state, going two and out in the 1B tourney.

The Loggers fell 10-0 to eventual state champ Liberty Christian and 11-8 to Almira/Coulee/Hartline.

Friday Harbor, which edged Coupeville by a single run for the league title and the region’s only 2B playoff berth, lost 9-5 to Raymond in the District 1/4 crossover game, a win shy of punching its ticket to the big dance.

Forks, which features Wolf coaching legend Ron Bagby’s niece, Chloe Gaydeski, claimed a program-best 2nd place finish, falling to powerhouse Adna in the 2B title game.

The Spartan fab frosh smashed a two-run homer in the title game and pitched her team to a win in the semifinals, flinging strikes on 38 of 48 pitches.

And may I just say, maybe it’s time Ron Bagby’s whole family parts ways with always-damp Forks and decamps for frequently windswept Coupeville.

It would make family reunions super-easy; it would give the ol’ ball coach something to do with his spare time if he could watch all of his niece’s games in person, and Coupeville Sports would add to its roster of headline-worthy athletes.

It’s a win-win, if you ask me.

Not that anyone is…


Track and Field:

Alex Murdy’s state title was one of five won by NWL athletes, with La Conner and Mount Vernon Christian each picking up two.

The Hurricane girls finished 3rd in the 1B team standings — matching Coupeville’s girls, who did the same in 2B — with a pair of relay wins sparking things.

MVC hit the tape first in the 4 x 200 and 4 x 400, with Ruthie Rozema, Isabel Dowrey, and Avery McCullough running on both teams.

Caitlin VanderKooy (4 x 2) and Josephine Swinburnson (4 x 4) rounded out the roster for the private school powerhouse.

Back in the 2B tilt, La Conner’s Tommy Murdock swept the 110 and 300 hurdles, as the Braves finished 9th in the team standings to Coupeville’s 5th place finish.

One Whidbey, kickin’ fanny and takin’ names. (Emmy Atwood photo)

Over in 1A, Naomi Atwood, as mentioned above, won the 800, while also finishing 3rd in the 1600.

Other Falcons to medal included Sierra Muller (3rd in the pole vault), Cole Tschetter (3rd in the 300 hurdles), and Cody Redford, who went 3rd in the high jump and 6th in the long jump.

Finally, the 3A meet saw Oak Harbor snag three medals.

The Wildcats put Noah Turner (2nd in the discus), Karen Salinger (7th in the long jump) and its girls 4 x 2 team on the podium.

That relay unit, which finished 5th, was comprised of Tessa Hughes, Addisen Boyer, Audrey Hart, and Salinger.

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Wolf freshman Teagan Calkins earned First-Team All-Conference honors for her superb play. (Jackie Saia photos)

The future is bright for Coupeville High School softball.

Coming off a strong 14-6 season, seven Wolves were tabbed to All-Conference teams by Northwest 2B/1B League coaches.

Better still, four of those seven, including all three players to land First-Team honors, still have two or more seasons left to play.

Sophomores Madison McMillan (SS) and Mia Farris (OF) were joined by freshman catcher Teagan Calkins in receiving top honors.

Four other Wolves — sophomore Taylor Brotemarkle (2B) and seniors Allie Lucero (P/1B), Gwen Gustafson (3B/OF), and Maya Lucero (P/1B) — were named to the Second Team.

Coupeville’s seven All-League players make for a formidable lineup.

Coach of the Year honors went to a former Wolf assistant coach, with Concrete’s Stephanie Henning honored by her fellow diamond gurus for reviving the Lion program.

“She kept her girls playing all season,” said CHS coach Kevin McGranahan. “Something to be said for her and her coaching.”

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Sophomore softball slugger Jada Heaton earned Most Improved status at a season-ending barbecue. (Jennifer Heaton photo)

It was a season of success.

Playing through brutal “spring” weather until the final week, with a non-conference schedule stuffed full of top-level foes, the Coupeville High School softball squad still went 14-6.

And while the Wolves lose five seniors to graduation, their normal starting lineup featured six players who were sophomores, freshmen, or 8th graders.

While that bodes well for the future, Saturday afternoon was all about hailing what had just been accomplished, as Kevin McGranahan and his assistant coaches honored the 2023 squad.

Sophomore Mia Farris claimed the team’s Offensive MVP award, with senior Gwen Gustafson earning Defensive MVP.

They were joined by sophomore Jada Heaton (Most Improved) and 8th grader Haylee Armstrong (Rookie of the Year).

Haylee Armstrong made a big impression while still in middle school. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Gustafson, Allie Lucero, Melanie Navarro, Sofia Peters, and Maya Lucero — a group which stayed together even after losing their freshman season to pandemic restrictions — were also honored with four-year awards.


Varsity letter winners:

Haylee Armstrong
Taylor Brotemarkle
Teagan Calkins
Mia Farris
Gwen Gustafson
Jada Heaton
Layla Heo
Allie Lucero
Maya Lucero
Chloe Marzocca
Madison McMillan
Melanie Navarro
Sofia Peters


Participation certificates:

Capri Anter
Candace Meek
Rhylin Price
Bailey Thule
Melanie Wolfe

Wolf seniors (l to r) Maya Lucero, Gwen Gustafson, Melanie Navarro, Sofia Peters, and Allie Lucero. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

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Central Whidbey Little League players enjoy team photo day. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

They’re in the swing of things.

With another season of Central Whidbey Little League action playing out, there’s still time for group photos.

The pics above and below come to us courtesy John Fisken, and, as always, are super, super serious.

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Mia Farris spent quite a lot of time on base this spring. (Jackie Saia photo)

Mia Farris has a big bat, and she knows how to use it.

The sophomore sensation spent much of the spring racking up stats on the softball field, helping pace Coupeville to a strong 14-6 campaign.

Hitting out of the #2 hole, Farris led or was tied for the lead in eight of 12 offensive categories and was just three RBI’s away from sharing the top slot for a ninth time.

She and her teammates achieved much of their success thanks to their offensive firepower, and with a huge chunk of the roster being comprised of underclassmen, the future is bright.

As he scanned his season-ending stat sheet, CHS coach Kevin McGranahan took particular delight in his team’s OPS numbers.

That stat combines on-base percentage with slugging percentage, and an average around .800 is considered strong.

For Coupeville, 14 of 16 players topped that mark.

“We had a very good offensive season,” McGranahan said.

Madison McMillan goes yard. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)


CHS softball season stats, as compiled by Wolf coaches:



Mia Farris – 74
Taylor Brotemarkle – 60
Teagan Calkins
– 59
Maya Lucero
– 57
Madison McMillan
— 57
Allie Lucero
– 56
Gwen Gustafson
– 55
Jada Heaton
– 36
Melanie Navarro
– 33
Sofia Peters
– 32
Haylee Armstrong
– 15
Layla Heo
– 7
Chloe Marzocca
– 5
Capri Anter – 4
Bailey Thule – 2



Farris — 38
Brotemarkle — 31
McMillan — 31
Calkins — 30
M. Lucero — 25
Gustafson — 23
A. Lucero — 22
Heaton — 17
Navarro — 16
Peters — 11
Armstrong — 7
Marzocca — 2
Anter — 1
Heo — 1



Farris — 40
McMillan — 37
Brotemarkle — 35
Calkins — 30
A. Lucero – 27
M. Lucero – 26
Navarro — 20
Heaton — 18
Gustafson — 17
Peters — 13
Armstrong — 10
Marzocca — 9
Anter — 3
Thule — 3
Heo — 1
Melanie Wolfe — 1



Farris — 12
Brotemarkle — 11
Calkins — 8
M. Lucero — 8
McMillan — 7
Gustafson — 5
A. Lucero — 5
Navarro — 4
Peters — 4
Heaton — 2
Anter — 1
Armstrong — 1



Farris — 4
A. Lucero — 4
McMillan — 4
Armstrong — 2
Calkins — 2
M. Lucero — 2
Brotemarkle — 1
Navarro — 1



Farris — 3
Navarro — 3
Calkins — 2
A. Lucero — 2
Armstrong — 1
Brotemarkle — 1
M. Lucero — 1
McMillan — 1



McMillan — 31
Farris — 28
Gustafson — 21
M. Lucero — 20
Calkins — 19
Navarro — 19
Brotemarkle — 17
A. Lucero — 14
Heaton — 13
Armstrong — 5
Peters — 5
Anter — 3
Marzocca — 1
Thule — 1



Farris — 36
McMillan — 22
A. Lucero – 19
Calkins – 17
Brotemarkle — 16
M. Lucero — 15
Peters – 14
Navarro – 13
Gustafson – 8
Heaton – 8
Thule – 6
Anter — 5
Armstrong – 5
Marzocca — 5
Heo — 4
Wolfe — 3


Batting Average:

McMillan — .544
Brotemarkle — .517
Farris — .514
Calkins — .508
Navarro — .485
Heaton — .472
Armstrong — .467
M. Lucero — .437
Gustafson — .418
Marzocca — .400
A. Lucero — .393
Peters — .344
Anter — .250
Heo — .143


On-Base Percentage:

Wolfe — 1.000
Thule — .750
Marzocca — .700
McMillan — .671
Anter — .667
Farris — .667
Brotemarkle — .618
Calkins — .618
Navarro — .617
Armstrong — .571
Heaton — .568
M. Lucero — .556
A. Lucero — .547
Peters — .543
Gustafson — .492
Heo — .455


Slugging Percentage:

Armstrong — 1.000
Navarro — .939
Farris – .905
McMillan – .860
Calkins – .814
Brotemarkle — .783
A. Lucero – .732
M. Lucero – .702
Heaton — .528
Gustafson – .509
Anter — .500
Peters — .469
Marzocca — .400
Heo — .143



Farris — 1.572
Armstrong — 1.571
Navarro — 1.556
McMillan — 1.531
Calkins – 1.432
Brotemarkle – 1.401
A. Lucero – 1.279
M. Lucero – 1.258
Anter — 1.167
Marzocca – 1.100
Heaton – 1.096
Peters – 1.012
Gustafson – 1.001
Wolfe — 1.000
Thule – 0.750
Heo – .598

Sweet-swinging stat machine Teagan Calkins, ready to go ruin another pitcher’s day. (Jackie Saia photo)

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