By GERRY STEELE
Of the Baker City Herald
Two years ago, the Steve Bachman-coached Baker girls softball team made its first trip to the Class 3A state playoffs. Last year, Baker tied Ontario for second place in the GOL and returned to the Class 3A playoffs before falling 9-4 at The Dalles in the opening round.
This season, Baker (15-7 overall) finished third in the GOL, and travels to Scappoose Tuesday for the opening round of the state playoffs. Game time is 4 p.m.
Leading a group of returning seniors is center fielder Jamey Parks (.362), a two-time first-team all-GOL player.
Three other first-team picks anchor the Bulldogs infield. Nicole Landstrom (.455) is at third base, Ashley Rino (.326) at second, and Beth Hull (.506) at first.
Hull leads the team in batting average, home runs (4), RBIs (23) and hits (40).
Katie Kuchenbecker moved from right to left field this year. Chase Shira is penciled in in right.
Anchoring Bakers pitching staff is junior Megan Curtis. She is 7-5 with a 1.54 earned-run average. She has struck out 56 and walked 37.
Savannah Newman is the shortstop. Lacey Barker joins Curtis on the pitching staff. Ashley Craig handles the catching chores.
Barker is 5-2 with a 1.47 ERA. She has struck out 29 and walked 21. Craig is hitting .365.
Scappoose, 17-6, is the Cowapa League runner-up. The Indians have won six in a row, outscoring their opponents 47-1 in those games.