PORT ANGELES — It’s only been one week into the season, and Port Angeles fastpitch head coach Staci Poythress already has some bad news.
Senior standout hurler Kayla Ralston’s shoulder, which had been a problem entering the season, may keep her from pitching the rest of the season.
It’s the kind of loss that not only hurts the team, but hurts the second-year coach on a different level.
“I was kind of in denial,” Poythress said about Ralston’s injury. “Originally, I had hoped she would be able to pitch.
“I feel bad for her. Nobody worked harder than her in the offseason.”
The injury will not keep the team’s top player from getting on the field, however. Last season she and junior shortstop Kelly Henderson were both second-team all-Narrows League players.
Both will be counted on to produce for the Riders at the plate and on the field — Henderson at shortstop and Ralston at first base.
“Kayla is just good all the way around,” Poythress said. “[Henderson] is just one of those kids I could put anywhere on the field and she would do a good job.”The Riders return six players from last year’s fourth-place squad, only four of which are seniors.