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PREVIEW: Tiger girls look for repeat season

The Northwestern High School softball team would love to have a season like it did last year.

After all, the 2016 Tigers finished with an overall record of 24-5, tied for first place in the Heart O’ North Conference with a 13-1 mark; and advanced to the WIAA state tournament for the first time in 35 years.

Northwestern won the Class B state championship in 1981.

After tying with Bloomer for first place in the HON, the Tigers rattled off playoff wins over St. Croix Central (15-0, 5 innings), Bloomer (2-1), Rice Lake (11-2), Baldwin-Woodville (13-2, 5 innings) and Merrill (4-3).

Northwestern’s season ended with a 1-0 loss to Develan-Darien in the state semifinals.

Key players lost from last year’s squad are pitcher Cheyenne Johnson, catcher Lexi Janigo and infielder Samantha Clark. All three players were all-conference and Johnson and Janigo were named to the all-region team.

Johnson is also a pitcher/infielder at UW-Eau Claire and Janigo is listed as a utility player with the Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs.

Helping fill the void are Laryssa Vik (C/OF), a first-team all-conference selection in 2014 and 2015; Cassidy Friend (SS/P), first-team all-conference in 2015; and Brooklyn Oswskey (1B/P), all-conference.

Other prospective starters include seniors Lindsey Evans, Rose Tokar, Allison Ruffi and Macey Schultz; junior Caitlin Westlund; and sophomore’s Tory Anderson and McKenzie Correll.

NHS coach Scott Janigo expects the Tigers and Bloomer to battle for the top spot in the HON along with Cumberland.

“The HON will be a strong conference once again,” Janigo said. “But despite losing three quality players, we have plenty of experience and I expect us to be competitive and a team to beat in the conference.”

The Tigers opened the season with a 6-3 loss to Grantsburg.

After playing its next six games on the road, Northwestern returns home to host Cumberland in a doubleheader on April 22.

TIGER TALES: Janigo’s overall record in nine seasons with at NHS is 133-54. … Janigo’s assistant coach is Ben Carlson and volunteer coaches are Jay Johnson and Rich Oswskey and the team manager is Kamry Gary.

Northwestern Tigers

2017 Softball Roster

Head coach: Scott Janigo

2  McKenzie Correll................ 2B/OF       So.

3  Cassidy Friend................... SS/P         Sr.

4  Brecken Oswskey.............. IF/P           Fr.

6  Jayda Klobucher................ OF/P          Fr.

7  Alyssa Little....................... IF/P           Fr.

8  Lexi Fortin........................... Of              So.

9  Brooke Ogren...................... Of              Fr.

10 Brooklyn Oswskey............ 1B/P          Sr.

11 Caitlin Westlund................ OF             Jr.

14 Lindsey Evans.................. 2B/OF        Sr.

15 Madysin Rossman............ IF              So.

16 Tory Anderson................... U               So.

19 Courtney Westlund............ OF             So.

20 Macey Schultz................... P               Sr.

22 Kennedy Nelson................ IF/P           Fr.

31 Allison Ruffi....................... 3B             Sr.

33 Emma Moore..................... IF               Fr.

39 Rose Tokar........................ 1B/OF        Sr.

 

Northwestern Tigers

2017 Softball Schedule

Mon. April 3........ vs. Grantsburg (L, 6-3)

Tue. April 4......... at Cameron, 5 p.m.

Fri. April 7........... at Rice Lake, 5 p.m.

Tue. April 11....... at Ashland, 4:30 p.m.

Thur. April 13...... at Superior, 4:30 p.m.

Tue. April 18....... at Spooner, 5 p.m.

Thur. April 20...... at Hayward, 5 p.m.

Sat. April 22........ vs. Cumberland (2), 11 a.m.

Tue. April 25....... vs. Barron, 5 p.m.

Thur. April 27...... vs. Bloomer, 5 p.m.

Fri. April 28......... at Duluth East, 4:30 p.m.

Tue. May 2.......... at Ladysmith, 5 p.m.

Thur. May 4......... vs. Spooner, 5 p.m.

Poynette Invitational

May 5-6............... vs. TBD

Tue. May 9.......... vs. Hayward, 5 p.m.

Thur. May 11....... at Barron, 5 p.m.

Sat. May 13........ at Chetek (2), 11 a.m.

Tue. May 16........ at Bloomer, 5 p.m.

Thur. May 18....... vs. Ladysmith, 5 p.m.

Sat. May 20........ at Hurley (2), 11 a.m.

May 23-24        WIAA regionals

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