North Tahoe softball | Lakers bounce back after lost season
The North Tahoe softball team is in rebuilding mode.
A year after having to forfeit most of their season due to lack of participation, the Lakers — many of whom are new to the sport — continue to impress their coach with their daily improvement and resolve.
“They’re definitely improving,” said North Tahoe coach Christine Bettera. “I’m happy to have a team this year, first of all. Last year we had to call it quits early because we did not have enough players, which was really unfortunate for the seniors.
“Now I’ve got a bunch of girls who have never played softball before. It’s been a struggle because of that, obviously, but they get better every single practice. It’s kind of amazing. I have to remind them when we’re losing, ‘Hey, you’ve only played eight games in your career, and these other girls have played a lot more, so you should be really proud of yourselves.’ So in that sense they’re doing really well.”
The North Tahoe squad has only three returning players and three seniors, with first baseman Ivy Altick and pitcher Kalia Norris representing the returning upperclassmen along with sophomore shortstop Valencia Covell. Brittany Fisher is the other senior.
The rest of the team is made up of seven sophomores and one freshmen, which Bettera said bodes well for the future.
“A lot of them are sophomores, so hopefully I’ll have them for a couple more years,” she said.
Covell, who has a good eye and is a threat on the bases with her quickness, leads off the batting order. Sophomore Anayanci Graciano, who recently moved from center field to catcher, bats second, sophomore left fielder Karina Orozco bats third and Norris is cleanup.
Norris is followed by sophomore right fielder and second baseman Karla Hernandez in the fifth slot, while freshman second baseman and catcher Jaylyn Rose hits sixth, Altick seventh, sophomore third baseman Kelsey Colmenero eighth, and outfielder Ariel Dunn or utility player Alondra Chavez ninth.
Norris handles the starting pitching role, although Bettera said Chavez and Lorena Delgato are learning how to pitch.
The Lakers’ best shot at picking up their first win comes May 6 when they play a league doubleheader at Silver Stage (0-8). North Tahoe is scheduled to host Battle Mountain (4-4) on May 3 and Whittell on May 13 to conclude the season.