Changes for softball at West Seattle High School, with details from parent volunteer Denise Liftin:
With the departure of Coach Carrie Burr at the beginning of the school year to take on other opportunities as Athletic Director and Activities Coordinator at Ballard High School , WSHS Wildcats Fastpitch had to say goodbye to their very successful coaching staff (also including Chuck Albany, Gordon Hessel and Alicia Hill, who had assisted Coach Burr).
Although the former staff will be missed, the team is excited that stepping in to take over the Wildcat Fastpitch tradition are new Head Coach Jim Perkins and Assistant Coach Deavonnie Spadoni, both of whom were involved with John F. Kennedy High School Fastpitch (Deavonnie as a catcher and Jim as an Assistant Coach)
Photos, and some words from the new coach, as Denise’s report continues after the jump:
(Left photo by Kersti Muul; right photo by Lori Clark)
Here is a bit more about Jim, in his own words:
I started playing competitive men’s fast pitch in 1993 with Hobnobber Tavern out of Burien. As the starting shortstop the following year, 1994, we won a World Championship in the NAFA AA division winning 7 straight games and 5 were come-from-behind. Opportunities to win another championship presented itself over the next 10 years but we did not quite reach that level of success until 2005 where a group of talented players merged to form Team EZ Promotions. This time as a second baseman, I was awarded with a second World Championship and ‘All World’ Defense honors.
Thankfully as my playing years were winding down I received an invitation to work out with the John F. Kennedy High School girls fast pitch program (Now the Kennedy Catholics). Being that I graduated from JFK in 1985, I truly wanted to return to Kennedy to give back what was given to me many years prior. To share and contribute my knowledge of the game became a goal but it was difficult to reach at the time due to a current work schedule. It took a few years for me to give head coach Dino Josie a firm commitment but it happened when a fellow men’s fast pitch player and friend Mike Trautmann joined the JFK coaching staff.
We had some ‘black and blue’ years, referring to bruised limbs and egos but a group of amazing young ladies in 2007 returned that incredible feeling of accomplishment and success when a State Championship was won. This time as an assistant coach, the excitement was just as high as winning as a player. Wait, it’s not over…2008 was a repeat performance! Again, the girls were composed despite a new rivalry with Timberline. A team who beat us a week before but we returned the favor for another State Title. Yes, the same feelings were expressed this time more proud as I shook the hands of fellow coaches Dino and Mike.
I still play fast pitch, not as competitive as one time, but more so to have a bit of fun with fellow players and friends…the very people I shared the experiences with above. A goal of mine to achieve this season at West Seattle will be to guide this new group of young ladies to ‘paths of fast pitch success’ and with the support of my staff, players, parents, and the love of my life … we will succeed.
As Denise notes, the coaching change also was reported by SeattleTimes.com (WSB partner). According to the online calendar for WSHS sports, softball starts in March.
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