Last season the Archbold softball team, under the guidance of Joe Frank, captured the Northwest Ohio Athletic League crown, sectional title, and district title before closing out its 25-2 season at regionals.
Frank has a 216-62 record in his 10 years at the helm of the Blue and Gold.
Four Streaks were lost to graduation, including Sarah Wyse and Courtney Day, First Team All-State, and Alyssa Schaub, Second Team All-State, along with Alicia Drewes, but the cupboard is not bare, with eight returning for Frank.
“We are hard-working and have a good attitude, and return four starters in the infield, but we are inexperienced on the mound with Hanna Allison, who is backed up by two freshmen,” said Frank.
“We lost three starters who were all four-year letterwinners, which means we will need some leaders to step forward.”
Back are seniors Morgan Cody, outfield, honorable mention NWOAL, .299 batting average, 22 runs batted in; Chelsea Goebel, second base, Second Team All-NWOAL, .276 BA, nine RBIs; Megan Gerig, defensive position/first base, .295 BA, 14 RBIs; Mindy Rupp, right field, .242 BA, eight RBIs, 16 stolen bases); and Ruthie Beck, catcher.
Allison, a pitcher with a .300 BA and eight RBIs, is the only returning junior.
Two sophomores are back: Becca Gerig, First Team All- NWOAL, shortstop, .352 BA, 20 RBIs; and Cassidy Wyse, honorable mention All-District in 2012, Second Team All-NWOAL, pitcher, .393 BA, 22 RBIs, nine stolen bases.
“We will again play a very competitive non-league schedule that will prepare us for NWOAL and tourney play,” said Frank.
“We hope to improve as the season goes on and to challenge for the NWOAL title. I am confident that our pitching will also improve as we gain experience at the varsity level.
“Leadership will also be a key after graduating three four-year letterwinners. I am confident that this team will be a hard working group that will make huge strides as the season progresses.”
Frank thinks Evergreen is the favorite in the NWOAL, “while several other teams will be more than capable of springing an upset on any given day.
“I think we will be a factor in the race, but have a lot of hard work ahead of us before NWOAL play begins.”
Assistant coaches are Greg Kuhlman, Dan Rychener, Sarah Betts, and Amanda Kern.
The Streaks are scheduled to open their season at Otsego, Monday, March 26.