By Spencer Stueve
The Arcadia Apaches baseball team begins their season on February 24 in the Frozen Ropes Classic. With less than a month until the opening game of the season, it’s a good time to look back at what the Apaches did last year and look forward to what you can expect this season.
Under the guidance of Coach Nick Lemas, the Apaches finished the 2017 season with an overall 17-10 record, finishing 12-2 in league play and ending up just one game behind Crescenta Valley for the Pacific League title. Despite losing several top hitters from a year ago, much is expected of the Apaches in 2018. Matthew Miao and John Woo are both gone from a season ago, but Dominick Tello, Jacob Lopez, Chase Pederson, Tyus Santa Anna, and Jeffrey Castillo all return to the very strong and deep Apache lineup.
While the lineup is stacked with returning talent, the Apache pitching staff will be a little more up in the air. Caden Ross, coming off a strong junior season, will look to step into a bigger role in 2018.
The Apache softball team is in a similar situation to the baseball team. Coming off a strong season one year ago, finishing with a 17-7 overall record, with a 10-4 league record, the Apache girls hope to improve in 2018. Though Jannelle Ha, who hit .507 last season, is off to Whittier College to continue her career, the Apaches return four of their top five hitters from a year ago, including superstar junior Deja Westbrook, who hit .553 last year and was named co-Player of the League.
Like the baseball team, pitching is more of a concern for the softball team in 2018. With the loss of Ha, Megan Lau will need to take a step forward in 2018.