High School District Softball Recap: Olympia, Rochester and Tumwater Qualify for State

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WIAA high school district softball tournaments concluded on Saturday, May 18, 2024, seeing three Thurston County high school teams qualify for the state tournament. Olympia High School qualified in the 4A District 4 tournament after wins over Bethel and Decatur. In 2A play both Rochester and Tumwater high schools qualified with wins via the losers bracket. Yelm High School fell short with two losses in “winner to state” games held at the RAC.

4A Softball Recap: Olympia High School Qualifies for State

Olympia (18-3) will travel to the 4A State Tournament in Richland to play Glacier Peak May 24, 2024. The Bears entered the 4A district tournament as the top seed and defeated Bethel 12-2, Decatur 4-3 then fell to Skyview 1-4 and then beat Emerald Ridge 1-0.

Olympia’s head coach, Drew Wellner, was pleased to be heading back to state. “The mission this year was to get back to state and the way this team came together and the strives we made over the season have given us that opportunity,” Wellner stated. “League MVP Sami Potvin was a major contributor but it was an overall team effort and that never give up on themselves attitude that has put us back into the state tournament.”

3A Softball Recap: River Ridge, Timberline, Yelm

Yelm (17-6-1) nearly qualified at the 3A Districts, held in Lacey, but fell short after a 5-8 loss to Auburn Mountainview and a 7-17 loss to Heritage. The Tornadoes defeated Timberline (16-4) 10-5 earlier in the tournament knocking the Blazers out of the tournament. River Ridge (13-9) had an early win but then fell to Prairie and Kelso.

2A Softball Recap: Rochester, Tumwater Both Qualify for State

Both teams that qualified for the 2A District from the 2A Evergreen (EVCO) conference qualified for the 2A State Tournament, joining other EVCO teams Aberdeen and WF West. Rochester (13-13) defeated Ridgefield 8-0 and will play North Kitsap in the opening round May 24 in Selah. Tumwater (16-4) beat Mark Morris 14-1 at districts and will play Ephrata, also on May 24.

Head coach for Rochester, Joni Lancaster was thrilled to have gained a state berth. “Our goal as a team at the beginning of the year was districts and our journey to get there was nothing shy of incredible,” Lancaster reflected after the District games in Chehalis. “They dug deep and wanted it more. Half of my team has never experienced state before so they are really excited. I am so proud of them. All 16 of them have contributed to this team’s success in some way.”

Tumwater’s top pitcher Ella Ferguson, is excited to be heading back to state. “I was ready to do absolutely anything to get us that state birth and the odds were against us but we are excited and out for blood this year,” Ferguson proclaimed. “We will give it our all and no one wants it more than us.”

1B – 2B Softball Recap: Pope John Paul, Rainier

Neither of the teams from 1B or 2B qualified for state in district play. Pope John Paul lost 5-20 May 13 to Orcas Island in 1B District play. Rainier (12-9), playing in the 2B District, lost to Ilwaco 0-2.

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