The Archbold softball program has enjoyed a lot of success over the past few seasons. Expect that to continue as they have nine letter winners returning and six that received all-league honors in 2015.
That group led the Blue Streaks to a 25-5 overall record, perfect finish in the NWOAL at 8-0, and a trip to the Division III regional tournament where they were runner-up to Bloom-Carroll.
“Our goal is to be playing our best softball of the year when tourney time rolls around,” said head coach Joe Frank who enters his 14th season with the Streaks. “Our non-league schedule will be very challenging as we prepare to defend the NWOAL title. It will take some time for us to adapt to the new roles that some of our players will be asked to fill.”
Leading their long list of returning letter winners is Madison Kohler who last year was first team all-league and all-district, as well as honorable mention All-Ohio. She posted a .419 batting average, 34 runs batted in and four home runs.
Alyssa Ziegler was also first team all-league for the Streaks. She split time with Payton Robinson in the circle and finished with a 12-2 record and 2.52 earned run average. She hit .362 with 32 RBIs.
Cassi Wyse returns after being named first team all-league and second team all-district a season ago. She hit .470 with six home runs and 42 RBIs.
Robinson, who was second team all-league in 2015, has a career pitching mark of 42-4. Also returning is Brooke Hines (honorable mention all-league), Emie Peterson (honorable mention all-league), Shelby Cline, Neila Kinsman and Brooke Kohler.
Frank states his team’s strengths for this season are that he has a hard-working group, experienced pitchers, as well as a positive attitude amongst the team. The main weakness is inexperience at key positions – primarily second base and catcher.
The Streaks add newcomers Macey Rupp, McKenna Towns, Peyton Dickman, and Andi Peterson. However, they have to replace departed letter winners Cassidy Williams (first team all-league, second team all-district), Winter Fricke (second team all-league, honorable mention all-district), Cayla Walker, and Peyton Driver.
Look for the Streaks to do everything they can to defend their league crown.
“There will be some stiff competition as we try to defend the title,” said Frank. “Bryan returns about eight starters and has few, if any, seniors. PH has most of its starters returning, including an all-state player who missed all of last season with a knee injury. Evergreen and Wauseon return some key players and will make some noise in the league as well. We can’t afford to take anyone lightly or we will pay the consequences for it.
“We hope to defend our NWOAL title and make a tourney run, and it will take all of our players pulling in the same direction for that to happen.”
Max Householder can be reached at 419-335-2010