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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Softball notes: Lakeside slugger Madilyn Naccarato bounces back quickly

Madilyn Naccarato’s final softball season at Lakeside (Nine Mile Falls) appeared to be over before it began.

Naccarato severely injured her knee during volleyball practice in late October. Her doctors didn’t mince words when the 2014 Northeast A League Offensive Most Valuable Player asked them about the prospects of another season with the Eagles.

“They told me I would not be ready for my senior year,” said Naccarato, who heard that the recovery period would be 6-9 months. “Even just talking about it, I’m getting choked up.

“It was definitely discouraging, but kind of encouraging because I wanted to prove them wrong.”

Dedicating herself to physical therapy, Naccarato surprised her doctors and recently received clearance to return as designated hitter.

“I thought, “If I do push hard, I will get through this and I will be ready, and I will play with these girls again,’ ” Naccarato said.

She rejoined the team on April 18 as the Eagles (13-2 overall, 9-0 NEA) swept Chewelah. In her first five games she went 7 for 10 with five runs batted in.

Naccarato, a four-year varsity player and Nine Mile Falls native, has played softball since she was 5 years old. She would like to continue playing in college and study marketing or business.

Coach Chuck Moffatt was understandably worried about losing Naccarato’s bat for half the season, but the Eagles are loaded with talent.

Among the offensive leaders: junior Taylor Wuesthoff, .560 batting average, two homers and 14 RBIs; junior Hailey Lesser, .444, 11 RBIs; freshman Saelor Dvorak, .429; and senior Erin Tiffany, three homers and 17 RBIs.

Junior McKensie Brittos, 10-1 in the circle with 57 strikeouts and an earned-run average of 3.29, is batting .442 with three homers and 18 RBIs.

Second season beckons

Area postseason play begins Monday at Spirit Lake when Intermountain League champion Timberlake hosts the first day of the Idaho 3A district tournament. Tuesday’s title game winner will advance to the state tournament, May 15-16 at Ramsey Park in Coeur d’Alene. One other team will advance to a state play-in game May 9 at Payette.

Idaho Inland Empire League teams begin regional play Tuesday.

Coeur d’Alene, the IEL 5A champion, will host four games that afternoon. The team that wins twice that day will advance to the state tournament, May 15-16 at Post Falls. One other team will advance to a state play-in game on May 9.

The 4A regional begins in Rathdrum at IEL 4A champion Lakeland. The championship round to determine the state tournament representative is May 9. The state tournament is May 15-16 at CdA’s Ramsey Park.

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