Wolverines getting back in the swing of things
New season, same hurdles for the Truckee High softball team.
With more than two feet of snow blanketing the school’s fields, the Wolverines have been practicing in the old gym since tryouts began late last month, while occasionally working out on dry land in Reno. At almost 6,000 feet in the Sierra, the routine is nothing new for Truckee teams.
“We may not have a home game this year,” said Truckee head coach Mitch Brown, whose squad opens Northern 3A league play Wednesday at Sparks, despite being the home team on the schedule. “I’d kill to have (an indoor facility).”
Of Truckee’s six “home” games, four are scheduled in March, with the final two on April 19 and 26.
“It’s kind of a bummer, but we’re used to it in the gym,” said Katie Reiswig, a senior outfielder and one of the Wolverines’ top two returning hitters, along with sophomore catcher Chelsea Cordell. “We get a lot of good hitting practice in there.”
So far, hitting appears to be one of the Wolverines’ strengths, Reiswig said.
Conversely, she said, the team could use some fine-tuning on the defensive side.
“I think we’re coming together as a team, but we need to work on defense because we don’t have a field,” said Reiswig, who earned All-League first team recognition last season.
Besides the limited practice time on Reno fields, Truckee will rely on its preseason schedule ” which included a scrimmage against Loyalton, four games in the Yerington Tournament and a game against Portola on Monday ” to strengthen its defensive, and all-around, game.
On the 12-player roster, Truckee has seven returners, with four seniors, two juniors, four sophomores and two freshman. Two of the seven returners are pitchers, with sophomore Rachel Zissimos coming back as the No. 1 starter and senior Morgan Womack likely to be the second or third starter, Brown said.
Freshman Stacy Brenes is new to the pitching staff, and sophomore JV pitcher Hannah Zusy will be available on occasion to fill in as needed, Brown said. While having Zusy available for certain games “helps us immensely,” Brown said, she is the only pitcher on the JV team, and thus cannot play full time at the varsity level.
“I think we have a pretty strong team,” Brown said. “I don’t know how well we’ll do.
We’re young, but we have good talent and a great attitude.”
Despite their youth, Brown likes the Wolverines’ chances to make the postseason with this year’s new format, which accepts six of the seven Northern 3A teams. Last year Truckee came up one game short, finishing with a .500 record in league.
Jaimee Raber, a senior outfielder ” as well as a good sport when it comes to her coach’s razzing ” likes what she’s seen of her team so far.
“I think we’re looking pretty good right now,” she said. “We have a lot of girls who have skills.”