The state champion Arlington softball team is The Herald’s Team of the Year

Eds. note: The Team of the Year was selected by Herald staff based on first-hand observations and voting by fans.

For high school softball teams this spring, looking over and seeing the Eagles in the dugout across from you was a sign that the next seven innings were going to be rough.

The Eagles shot out to a 7-2 record to start the season. Then Arlington got star pitcher Ronnie Ladines back and the Eagles became even more difficult to beat.

Ladines, who missed the early part of the season with an injured finger, went 16-1 with an earned-run average of 0.17 as she helped stymie Arlington’s opponents on its way to a 4A state championship. The Kent State-bound senior faced 317 batters and struck out 154 of them. She had 55 more strikeouts at the state tournament, where she didn’t allow a single run until the championship game.

Meanwhile, the Eagles really hit their stride offensively. Arlington outscored its opponents 24-1 at the state tournament.

In just half a season Ladines batted .552 with 10 home runs and a slugging percentage of 1.259. She had a 16-game hitting streak and despite missing the first month of the season still put together a season impressive enough to be named The Herald’s Softball Player of the Year.

The dangerous Arlington team was bolstered by Ladines, but was still a force before she was able to return. Senior Hayley Fields stepped up on the mound, going 10-2 for the Eagles and also batting .522 with a 19-game hitting streak over the course of the season.

Arlington’s last loss of the season came on April 26 against Cascade. The Eagles won 11 straight games to close out their season with a state championship.

And it should be pointed out that Arlington didn’t just beat teams, it beat teams with authority. The Eagles had 11 games in which they outscored their opponents by 10 runs or more, including Arlington’s first game at the state tournament in Spokane against Todd Beamer.

Hayden Fields, Hayley’s sister, drove in six of the Eagles’ 12 runs in that game, including what Arlington head coach Dan Eng called “two monster home runs,” as Arlington gave a glimpse of what was to come in the state tournament with a 12-0 win.

Dominant, almost doesn’t feel like a strong enough word.

More in Sports

Thiel: Since his arrival, Brown has solidified Hawks’ O-line

Seattle’s O-line has gone from disaster to competent in just a few short weeks, thanks to their new LT.

Three Storm players included in national team pool

Four-time Olympic gold medalist Sue Bird headlines the group

M’s bolster bullpen, add Nicasio, two others

Seattle adds Juan Nicasio in free agency and trades for Shawn Armstrong and Anthony Misiewicz.

Tough year turns ‘Lucky’ for Idaho angler

By Wayne Kruse For The Herald Gary March of Worley, Idaho, was… Continue reading

Return of ThunderTips podcast plus Wednesday practice notes

The latest ThunderTips Hockey Podcast, on which I appear alongside Seattle Thunderbirds… Continue reading

Seahawks ready Wilhoite to start at MLB for Wagner

The vet is at the center of Seattle’s preparation to stop Rams RB Todd Gurley in a pivotal NFC West matchup.

Wayne Kruse’s Pick of the Week: Winter crab

By Wayne Kruse For The Herald Just three weekends remain in the… Continue reading

Five high schools are leaving the Cascade sports conference

Archbishop Murphy and Cedarcrest will have to find a new conference as the others form their own.

Sutter accepts invite to play in CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game

Silvertips goalie Carter Hart named CHL Goaltender of the Week for the third straight week.

Most Read