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Shadle Park benefits from fresh arms

Pitching is often the name of the game in softball and that’s what had Shadle Park coach Juju Predisik worried last summer.

He was looking at the prospect of throwing an untested freshman against talented Greater Spokane League lineups. By late summer, Predisik learned that former Pullman pitcher Kaycee Perisho’s family had moved in a couple of blocks from Shadle Park. Shortly after that, Predisik found out that ex-East Valley pitcher Tiffany Lucas had relocated with her mom and step-dad about 3-4 blocks north of Shadle Park.

The two juniors have pitched every inning for Shadle Park, which sits roughly in the middle of the GSL standings with a 3-3 record.

“Kaycee’s mom is a teacher at the Skills Center in the nursing program,” Predisik said. “I’m glad she found a job in Spokane and thankful it happened to be in our backyard.”

Lucas is taking classes through the Running Start program offered at Spokane Falls Community College, Predisik said.

Through Shadle Park’s first four games, Lucas had a 0.24 ERA and Perisho a 0.30.

“They both do very well backing each other up,” Predisik said. “They’ve done a great job.”

The freshman pitcher is gaining experience on JV and she’s “definitely part of our future,” Predisik said.

Mt. Spokane also has benefited from a transfer from a Great Northern League school. Pitcher Katelyn Bauman leads the GSL with five wins. The former West Valley first baseman has a 3.15 ERA and 51 strikeouts, second behind the 54 posted by Ferris’ Erika Santarossa.

The departures of Perisho from Pullman, Lucas from East Valley – a GSL member last season now in the GNL – and Bauman have impacted the GNL. West Valley, which has two standout pitchers, is unbeaten and leads the GNL, but misses Bauman’s bat in the lineup. East Valley is in a four-team chase for second place. Pullman has yet to win a league game.

“The league lost quality pitching and anytime you lose pitchers that are pretty good … I can’t remember the last time Pullman wasn’t in the playoffs and now they’re at the bottom of the league,” West Valley coach Paul Cooley said. “You can get by with a good pitcher and win a half to a third of your games. Bauman was our leading hitter, No. 3 in the order. She would have been right in the middle of a tremendous lineup for us.”

Streak ends, wins don’t

Lake City sophomore pitcher Casey Stangel’s scoreless innings streak ended at 38 when Lakeland’s Erin Ogden homered in the first inning, but the Timberwolves kept right on winning. Lake City last week defeated the Hawks 7-2, Post Falls 8-0 and swept second-place Lewiston 5-2 and 5-0 to expand its lead in the Inland Empire League 5A standings.

“Credit to Casey and our team defense,” coach Laura Tolzmann said of Stangel’s scoreless streak. “It was good for us because we were able to respond as a team (against Lakeland). People are going to score at some point. I’m glad it was early.”

The first game of LC’s double dip with Lewiston was well played by both teams, Tolzmann said. “They put the ball in play and we had to play great defense. We both had runners on base and it was good pressure situations for both teams. We happened to come up with the key hits.”

Lake City (10-0, 6-0) is three games clear of Lewiston and Coeur d’Alene in the loss column. LC visits CdA today.