The Pierce Raiders women’s softball team is peaking at the right time.
The Raiders, who have an overall record of 17-15, have won eight straight games and have clinched a berth in the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges playoffs. Raiders head coach Mark Edmonston said his team has its sights set on winning the NWAACC West Division title before the playoffs start. If the Raiders win the division championship, it will improve their seeding in the playoffs.
“This is huge for us,” Edmonston said. “We’re two games out of first place with eight games to play. This is what you call an exciting time of year. We’re a lock for the playoffs and this will be the ninth year in a row we’ve made it there, but we want to win another West Division crown. We won it last year and now we want to start a winning streak and continue that streak. We’re doing well and all of our players are comfortable in their positions. There is nobody that is a fish out of the water or is stressed out. Everybody on this team is involved and contributing.”
Edmonston said the turning point of the 2014 season was the Skagit Crossover Tournament on April 12 and 13. The Raiders lost four straight games and knew something had to change.
“We changed our whole infield around and that has helped us a lot. Another huge key for us is that we are getting timely hits,” Edmonston said. “We changed our batting order and instead of having designated hitters for our pitchers we started letting them hit themselves instead. Our freshmen have been stepping up offensively as well.”
Edmonston said pitchers Karlee Rose Perry and Kelsi Goodwin have been the cornerstones of the team’s resurgence in the pitching circle and at the plate. Other players making an impact include Amanda Allison, Tricia Bonifacio and Molly LaMotte.
“Molly has consistently been hitting between .320 and .350 this year and has eight home runs so far,” he said.