With a mix of freshmen and veterans, the Newton High School softball team continues to look to move forward in the 2019 season.
Danny Park returns for his fourth season as the Railer coach. He is assisted by Elizabeth Gunn, Leeza Enfield and Mike Arellano.
Newton finished 0-21 last season, 0-12 in Ark Valley-Chisholm Trail League Division I play. The Railers fell to Goddard in the first round of Class 5A regional play.
Returning starters include Emily Peaney (sr., CF), Blazee Stahl (sr., 1B-OF), Mallory Seirer (so., SS), Toria Thaw (so., 3B) and Megan Watkins (so., P).
Peaney was a first-team All-AV-CTL I pick. Thaw was a second-team all-league selection. Stahl and Seirer were both honorable mention all-league picks.
Looking to move up from the junior varsity ranks is Josie Bacon (so., OF).
Top freshman newcomers include Olivia Sandoval (P-OF), McKinnah Cusick (P-OF), Gracie Rains (C), Allyson Symmonds (IF), Jennifer Rubio (IF) and Makenzie Cusick (C-IF).
“We will start a lot of younger players,” Park said. “But we have a good balance of youth and experience.”
Park looks for Derby, Maize and Salina South to be among the top contenders in the league this season.
Derby was a Class 6A state qualifier last season.
Top non-league foes include Arkansas City, Andover Central and Andover. Andover Central is the defending Class 4A, Division I state champion, but was moved up to Class 5A for this season. Arkansas City also qualified for state in Class 4A, Division I and moved up to Class 5A.
March 29 @ Andover Central 4 p.m.
April 2 Arkansas City 4 p.m.
April 5 Andover 4 p.m.
April 9 Salina South 4 p.m.
April 12 Derby 4 p.m.
April 16 @ Campus 4 p.m.
April 18 @ Valley Center 4:30 p.m.
April 23 Hutchinson 4 p.m.
April 26 @ Salina Central 4 p.m.
April 30 @ Maize 4 p.m.
May 13-15 Regionals TBA
May 23-24 State @ Maize High School TBA