FAIRBANKS-Three Interior softball teams are heading to their state tournaments which start tomorrow. The North Pole Patriots, Hutchison Hawks, and Lathrop Malemutes are in the state softball tournament in Anchorage at the Cartee Fields. The teams got in some practices at the South Davis Fields this week before heading down.
The Malemutes are coming off their second straight Railbelt title and have a first round bye on Friday. It'll be a rematch on Friday at 3:30 for the Mutes. Lathrop last year's, state runner up will face the either South or West Anchorage. South won state last year over Lathrop and West beat Lathrop 10-5 in early May.
The Malemutes want a little revenge but they also want to be better than last year's state performance.
"We wan to have a little bit of a redemption match against them. Ya know? We wanna show them that it wasn't Lathrop they played last time and so we're definitely ready to show them what we've got amd what we're going to bring to them," junior catcher Jess Hall said.
"I think that a lot of us are really thirsty to, ya know, come back and win the state title because we're all ready to take it. I'm mean we felt how second place was and we really didn't like it," senior first baseman Selena Maxwell said.
The defense and pitching have been great for the Malemutes all season long but head coach Bill Duffiled thinks his offense will be the x-factor at the state tournament.
"One area that I would like to see a lot more consistency is the offense," Duffield said. "We have games where we hit the ball really really well and the next day we struggle a little bit so hopefully when they show up on Friday to play our offense is ready to go and we put the bat on the ball."