By Mike Maltais
Warm weather along with some crucial help from snow blowers and heavy equipment provided by Palm Construction allowed Liberty Bell High School’s five spring varsity sports teams — baseball, soccer, track and field, softball and tennis — to practice outdoors this week as the first games of the season got underway.
This week the News takes the measure of the varsity boys’ soccer team and reigning league champion Lady Lions softball team.
Most of the Lady Lions who made up last year’s league champion softball team are back on the diamond this season preparing for another run at the state playoffs.
The team lost All-League player Cierra Ebbert and Tamara Klein to graduation last year, but was left with a solid core of returning veterans to build around.
All-League players Baylee Canedo, Kelsey Baldwin, Lily Darwood and Kuirstin Pilkinton are among the familiar faces in the infield along with seniors Julie McMillan and Katherine Tannehill.
Coach Lee Pilkinton and assistant coach Rick McCauley guided the Lady Lions to a 13-4 record last year that fairly dominated the Central Washington B League North and got the team as far as the double-elimination state championships at Yakima. Losses to Northwest Christian and Napavine stopped Liberty Bell short of the semifinals, but gave the girls valuable playoff experience.
The Lady Lions will face five league opponents in Oroville, Lake Roosevelt, Bridgeport, Pateros and Manson this year and open season play with a doubleheader against CWB League South rival Waterville on Wednesday (March 26) at 3 p.m.
Seniors: Julie McMillan, Korrie Perryman, Katherine Tannehill
Juniors: Kelsey Baldwin, Baylee Canedo, Lily Darwood, Whitney Fox, Carley McMeans, Kuirstin Pilkinton
Sophomore: Julia Schrum
Freshman: Megan Dammann
8th graders: Janie McMillan, Lauren Ochoa, Isabel Salas, Devin Surface
2014 LBHS varsity softball schedule
Wed Mar 26 @Waterville(DH), 3 pm
Sat Mar 29 @ Chelan JV(NL/DH), 11am
Thu Apr 10 Tonasket(NL), 4:30pm
Tue Apr 15 @ Manson, 4pm
Sat Apr 19 Bridgeport(DH), 11am
Tue Apr 22 Lake Roosevelt, 4:30pm
Sat Apr 26 @ Pateros(DH), 11am
Tue Apr 29 @ Bridgeport, 4pm
Sat May 3 @ Oroville(DH), 11am
Tue May 6 Pateros, 4:30pm
Sat May 10 Manson(DH), 11am
Tue May 13 Oroville, 4:30pm
Sat May 17 @ Lake Roosevelt(DH) 11am
Tue May 30 Districts, TBD
Sat May 24 Regionals, TBD
Fri May 30 State, TBD
Sat May 31 State, TBD
A near-dozen players crowded the pitch at Liberty Bell High School earlier this week as new coach, Lincoln Post, and his assistant, Lucas Budrow, put the guys through ball-handling fundamentals and practice scrimmages.
“It’s borderline right now whether we’ll have enough players to field a varsity and a junior varsity team,” Post said Monday.
The roster of players has been growing by the day and the coach said he hopes to have between 25 and 30 players by the time students have completed other activities.
Among Post’s returning veterans are four All-Conference selections from last year including juniors Willy Duguay, Jose Dominguez and Jorge Lara and sophomore Charlie Thornton-White.
Seven seniors who helped the Mountain Lions to an 8-6-1 season last year were all lost to graduation, and so far no seniors have shown up on this year’s roster of players.
While Liberty Bell just missed the district playoffs last year, the team showed a huge improvement over the prior three seasons when the soccer teams had only one win in 46 games.
The Mountain Lions got their first taste of action last Saturday (March 15) when they beat Omak and lost to Okanogan in two 20-minute games.
Liberty Bell was scheduled to travel to Quincy on Tuesday (March 18) for a non-league against the Jackrabbits’ JV.
The Mountain Lions will be in Cashmere on Thursday (March 20), at Wenatchee on Saturday (March 22) to play the Panther C squad, and at Manson on Tuesday (March 25) for their first league game against the Trojans.
Juniors: Wil Chandler, Garett Palm, Marty Larsen, Jorge Lara, Willy Duguay, Elijah Hansen-Lints, Jose Dominguez
Sophomores: Chase VanderYacht, Danny Rodriguez, Rowan Post, Charlie Thornton-White, Meritt Fink
Freshmen: Tyler Bergevin-Krumme, Colin Waichler, Leif Portman-Brown, Nate Hirsch, Bram Wathen, Kavi Mitchell, Michael Hafsos, Branden Jansen
8th graders: Carson Gunnip-Hunter, Eden Davis, Josh Dinham, Seth Stevie
2014 LBHS varsity boys soccer schedule
Thu Mar 20 @ Cashmere(NL), 4:30pm
Sat Mar 22 @ Wenatchee “C”(NL), 11am
Tue Mar 25 @ Manson, 4pm
Thu Mar 27 @ Oroville, 4pm
Tue Apr 8 Bridgeport, 4:30pm
Thu Apr 10 @ Omak(NL), 4:30pm
Thu Apr 17 Oroville, 5pm
Tue Apr 22 @ Manson, 4pm
Thu Apr 24 Okanogan(NL), 4:30pm
Tue Apr 29 @ Bridgeport, 4:30pm
Thu May 1 Manson, 5pm
Sat May 3 @ Oroville, 11am
Tue May 6 Bridgeport, 4:30pm