This weekend, the Portland State softball team will play host to several community college teams from the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges at Erv Lind Stadium in Northeast Portland
This weekend, the Portland State softball team will play host to several community college teams from the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges at Erv Lind Stadium in Northeast Portland. Nine games in all will be played between Saturday and Sunday, with the Vikings team participating in four.
Portland State will face three teams over the two-day tournament, starting with the Lower Columbia Lady Devils at 4 p.m. Saturday, followed by a 7:30 p.m game against Clackamas Community College. Play resumes for the Vikings on Sunday, with back-to-back games against Mount Hood Community College at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
For a full list of games between all participating schools, refer to www.goviks.com.
The 2009 season
Portland State was fantastic last season, winning the Pacific Coast Softball Conference championship with a record of 29-26, including a 15-6 record in PCSC play.
The Lady Devils were 37-7 last season, with an 18-2 record within the NWAACC league.
The Clackamas Community College Cougars were 21-21, and 10-10 in NWAACC play.
Rounding out Sunday are NWAACC league champions, the Mt. Hood Community College Saints, who took the championship with a record of 27-12 on the season and 9-10 within the NWAACC.
Scouting the Vikings
The two-day tournament amounts to what coach Tobin Echo-Hawk equated as spring training.
“It’s just a preseason tournament,” she said. “Our [opportunity to] just see what we’ve got in terms of newcomers and returners and different positions. We don’t really keep score, it’s just kind of our way to scrimmage teams other than amongst ourselves.”
The tournament will highlight the skills of Portland State’s newest freshman recruits and transfer students, including standout freshman recruit Anna Bertrand from McMinville High School.
The Gatorade Oregon Softball Player of the Year, Bertrand helped bring her Grizzlies to the Oregon 6A semifinals by striking out 268 batters in 176 innings.
“She’s the type of pitcher that, even though she’s a freshman, she doesn’t act like a freshman,” Echo-Hawk said. “Our strength—as far as this year’s team goes—it is going to be on the mound.”
Also making their debut this weekend are freshmen Danielle Lynn and Carly McEachran, both new recruits fresh out of high school. Lynn, an outfielder, and McEachran, a utility infielder, are components that Echo-Hawk feels will make important contributions to the 2010 club.
Echo-Hawk said of Lynn, “She’s going to be a starter in the outfield. She’s little but definitely mighty. She has a lot to offer and is kind of like a little sparkplug for us.”
McEachran, a two-time first team selection at Henry M. Jackson High School, hails from Spokane, Wash., and will be an emotional addition to the team.
“On the infield, right now she’s at third. She’s a very emotional player, she plays for every pitch, every inning,” Echo-Hawk said.
All in all, the tournament will be an opportunity to see what six new freshmen and one junior college transfer have to offer the 2010 Viking softball team.
The team will play in one more autumn tournament, beginning on Oct. 24. That two-day event will be co-hosted by the University of Oregon and Oregon State University, and will serve as another litmus test for the 2010 Portland State team.