Prep Baseball & Softball

PREP SOFTBALL PREVIEW: Nooksack Valley Pioneers



Coach: Tom Harmon

Last year: Finished the year 15-6 overall and 4-8 in Northwest Conference play. ... Despite the middling regular season effort, they advanced through the district and tri-district playoffs before getting to the Class 1A State Tournament, in which they went 2-2.

Players to watch: Alexis Pike (Sr. IF/P), Olivia Berkan (Jr., 1B/P), Arlissa Oettel (Jr., IF), Cassidy Zylstra (Jr., 3B), Brianna Turner (Jr., C)

Outlook: After a great run in the postseason last year, the Pioneers return with loads of talent. Alexis Pike and Olivia Berkan will enter the circle for the Pioneers this season and both have plenty of talent. This junior class is quite strong for the Pioneers, as Arlissa Oettel, Cassidy Zylstra and Brianna Turner accompany Berkan in the graduating class of 2016. “We have a pretty good returning corps,” coach Tom Harmon said. Another thing the Pioneers have going for them is their postseason experience in other sports. The softball team will bring in eight girls who just finished with the basketball team that went to the state regional. “You want kids to be great competitors and that helped them in that aspect,” Harmon said. The goal for Nooksack is the same as any other in the league: go as deep as you can in postseason. “You stub your toe if you look too far ahead,” Harmon said.