The Idaho state softball tournaments are back in North Idaho this year. First- and second-round games are Friday at several locations hosting classifications and schools vying for a state title.
Weather permitting, that is.
With forecasts for thunderstorms and rain throughout the weekend, officials hope contingency plans do not have to be implemented.
5A (at Post Falls HS)
District 1-2 champ Lake City (25-0) made a clean sweep of the regular season, then won two more in the district tournament to claim the championship.
In the district title game, Ashley Kaufman tossed a five-hitter and Olivia Zufelt hit a three-run home run and the Timberwolves beat the visiting Coeur d’Alene Vikings 10-1.
Kaufman went 3 for 3 with a triple, a home run and four RBIs and Emma Gray hit a solo homer in the Timberwolves’ first-round 8-5 win over Post Falls.
Kaufman, who signed a letter of intent to play volleyball at Central Washington, went 12-0 with a 0.65 ERA with 87 strikeouts over 54 innings in the regular season and batted .600 with three home runs and 19 RBIs.
The Timberwolves have a chip on their shoulder entering this tournament. They finished second at state two years ago to their first-round opponent, Eagle, when rain postponed the title game until Sunday. Last year, in another rain-soaked tourney, the Timberwolves finished fifth.
Lake City faces District 3 third-place Eagle (22-5) at 11 a.m.
After the district title game, CdA (11-8) needed to win a district loser-out, then a state play-in game to reach the tourney.
Maddie Ferniman went 3 for 4 with two doubles, four RBIs and two runs, Haley Lyons hit a two-run home run and the Vikings eliminated Post Falls 12-2 in the loser-out, then edged Meridian 7-6 to advance to state.
Coeur d’Alene takes on District 5/6 champion Highland (22-4) at 9 a.m.
4A (at Coeur d’Alene HS)
Lakeland (10-15) won the District 1-2 title last week and is the lone North Idaho entry in the field.
The Hawks beat Sandpoint 19-9 in a district first-round game and also knocked off the Bulldogs 15-5 in the title game.
Lakeland lost its first nine games playing a tough nonleague schedule – often playing up – but came on strongly at the end of the season, going 10-6 the rest of the way to reach the postseason.
Lakeland plays District 4/5 second-place Pocatello (16-10) in a first-round game at 11 a.m.
3A (at Ramsey Park in Coeur d’Alene)
Timberlake (17-1) was a juggernaut in league play and its only loss all season was to 4A Lakeland.
Kyndal Lindley went 2 for 4 with a double, a home run and four RBIs, Ashlyn Mallet went 2 for 3 with a double and three RBIs, and the Tigers beat Bonners Ferry 20-5 in the first round of the district tournament.
In the title game, Becca Malloy pitched a five-hitter and the Tigers downed Priest River 12-2. Malloy went 3 for 3 with three doubles and two RBIs and Bernie Carhart went 2 for 4 with four RBIs.
The Tigers take on District 5 champ Snake River (13-5) at 11 a.m.
Priest River (12-9) rebounded from the title game loss as Jasmine Martin went 3 for 4 with three RBIs to knock off Kellogg 14-4 in the district second-place game to earn a berth to state.
Priest River plays District 6 champ South Fremont (14-7) at 11 a.m.