Tigers named tops in conference
Honors for players Madison Plummer, Ashton Porter and Katrina Reichenbach, and coach Steve Richards, reflect strength of program
If a season in which the Newberg softball team won a playoff game for the first time in program history wasnt rewarding enough, three Tigers were honored by Pacific Conference coaches, who named Madison Plummer, Ashton Porter and Katrina Reichenbach to the all-league first team.
To top it off, head coach Steve Richards was named conference coach of the year.
I think hes definitely made an impact, senior Emily Bromagem said. I think hes just good for all of our attitudes put together. He kind of evens everybody out. I think that helps a lot.
Reichenbach was a unanimous first-team selection after hitting .490 with 10 RBI and 10 runs scored in league play. The junior hit .394 for the season and was also a standout defender despite moving from her natural position of shortstop to centerfield.
Her defense was solid this year and she had the third-highest batting average in the conference, Richards said. She had a solid season and I can only hope its going to be bigger and better next year.
Plummer, also a junior, was named to the first team as a pitcher after posting a 1.419 earned run average and a 4-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio en route to posting a 3-3 record in eight league appearances. Plummer was also a force at the plate, hitting .371 with 11 RBI in 14 league games. She nailed a two-run home run in the first inning of Newbergs first-round playoff game against McNary, helping propel the Tigers to an 11-5 win.
Her pitching stats in conference were pretty phenomenal, Richards said. If it wasnt the lowest, it was the second-lowest ERA in the conference. There is a lot of potential there. She could be first-team all-league pitcher again next season and really take us places. Her hitting is just a bonus.
Porter earned the nod from league coaches as the first team catcher. The junior backstop posted a .286 average and drew a team-high six walks, but may have drawn the most praise for her defense.
She calls all the pitches and runs a really good game from behind the plate, Richards said. That all-league recognition from the rest of the coaches is a real affirmation of what level shes playing at. Thats pretty impressive. I tell her that I think shes pretty good and she kind of rolls her eyes and smiles. But you hand someone that certificate that somebody else, not just my coach, thinks Im pretty good, thats a pretty fun feeling.
A total of six Newberg players earned all-league recognition, including the teams lone senior, Bromagem, who was named to the second team as a pitcher. In league play, Bromagem went 4-4 with a 3.192 ERA and also batted. .326.
Receiving honorable-mention accolades were infielder Charity Lawson and outfielder Courtney Croft. Lawson hit .346 and Croft .333 versus league foes this season as the Tigers (16-12, 7-7 Pacific Conference) finished fourth for the second consecutive season and were eliminated in the second round of the state playoffs by eventual state champion South Salem.