After losing in the state championship two of the last four seasons, last year to Jesuit and two years prior to North Medford, this year's Crimson Tide softball team will be looking for one more win.
"These girls worked very hard in the offseason and have improved a ton," said Glencoe head coach Jason Eastman. "I feel very confident that we can win any game we're in."
That's not to say he's looking forward to a state championship, but more so that he's excited about his team and the talent and potential they possess.
"We're very excited about this team, but our main goal is to take the season one game at a time," the coach said. "The girls understand that last year's success doesn't mean anything and they have to go out and earn it every day."
The Tide return seven starters from last year's state runner-up, and a lot of depth. Eastman says that offensively, they have a "scary" combination of speed and power, and that lead pitcher Izzy Womack will be tough to deal with on the mound.
"With a lot of success/experience under her belt, we expect her to be one of the best pitchers in the state this year and are excited about where she can go."
Notable returnees include seniors, third baseman Sydney Sahlfeld and second baseman Jessica Vice, who provide power and consistency at the plate. Sophomore shortstop Morgan DeBord, who was a 2016 MaxPreps All-American and whose speed and athleticism make her extremely valuable both offensively and defensively. And junior Ashlynn Bailey, who Eastman thinks could be one of the best catchers in the state with a very strong arm and quick release.
In addition, senior Megan Craig, who didn't play last year due to injury, will rejoin the team and will play first base and provide additional power to an already lethal lineup.
Eastman added that the freshman class is very athletic, and that Emma Ware and Nicole Eckhardt will provide both pitching and offensive depth, while Alivia Eastman's strong bat could make her a contributor.
Per usual, the Metro League will provide a stiff test for the Tide, and Eastman expects the usual suspects to be right there near the top.
"Jesuit will definitely still be very tough, as will Westview and Beaverton," he said.
Glencoe is scheduled to open their season March 15 versus West Salem, and travel to West Linn to play the Lions March 17 at 645pm.