Emma Stagliano (1) reaches up and snags a ball out of the air for the Douglas High softball team earlier this season. Stagliano is expected to be a big part of the Tigers’ outfield as a returning senior.
Photo by Ron Harpin.
With plenty of returning talent around the diamond, the Douglas High softball team isn’t dreaming anything short of competing at the top of Northern Nevada’s Class 5A.
Behind the pitching-catching combo of Talia Tretton and Ryleigh Blaire, the Tigers were able to prove themselves already a force to be reckoned with last season.
Tretton returns to the circle for her sophomore season after earning first team all-region honors last year in her first varsity campaign.
Calling the signs will once again be Blaire, who accompanied her pitcher on the first team all-region awards’ list last season.
“Our expectations are high. We expect to go out and win every time we play,” said head coach John Glover. “It’s a good crew coming back. We have some new kids on the team this year that we expect to contribute in a lot of ways.”
Joining Tretton in the circle will be Mackenzie Willis, who was a second team all-region selection after her sophomore season.
Around the infield
Expect to continue to recognize a few names around the Tiger infield from last year’s team that make it to the regional semifinal.
Willis will see time at first base along with Bre Williams and Tretton when not in the circle.
Glover said he will hold his hat on the Tigers’ offensive production from the first base slot this season.
Hailey Wilkinson returns from last season at second base and will see her time as a leadoff hitter for the Tigers.
Eva McNinch returns as a senior for her third season at the shortstop role while Douglas will also have Emma Glover and Dakota Till should hold down the fort at the hot corner.
The Tigers will have to replace some production in the outfield, but do have returning center fielder Emma Stagliano to help lead in the grass.
“She’s been in the program a long time and we’re really going to rely on her to run our outfield for us,” said Glover of Stagliano.
Delaney, Lillianne Lee, and Maddie Gooch all could see some time in the outfield as well with a mix of power and defensive prowess.
With 13 players on the roster – and Zora Simpson expected to return from injury in a few weeks – Glover knows the Tigers will be a tough out anywhere around the league.
Douglas is 4-4 early on in the season, but has put together an early season slate designed to be tested right out of the chute.
A 4-0 loss to Spanish Springs to open up the season was certainly not the easiest way for Douglas to get its feet wet in a new season.
However, the Tigers have responded in kind with three wins over quality programs from California in Milliken, Mater Dei and La Habra.
With seven of its first eight games on the road, Douglas will have a nice stretch of home games down the end of its season.
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