A North Whidbey softball team is heading to the state championships later this month.
The group of 8-, 9- and 10-year-old girls won the District 11 championships last weekend, which means they are the best softball team in their age group in Island and Skagit counties.
Arica Goulet is the team manager – as of last Tuesday. The all-star team is made up of the best players from the two regular-season North Whidbey home teams. Goulet is a parent and was a manager of one of the home teams. She got pulled in at the last second to manage the all-star team.
“They have actually only practiced three times since June 2,” she said. “They called me on Tuesday and said ‘you’re the only eligible manager, if you don’t manage this team they’ll have to dissolve.’”
Goulet described it as a “rough start” but that hasn’t affected the team’s ability to succeed. Even with the limited number of practices, the team was able to win the district all-star tournament.
The state championship tournament opens on Friday night, July 22 in Vancouver, Wash. and runs through July 30.
“I don’t know how many games we’re going to play,” Goulet said, but it’s clear she’s very confident in the team.
They’re going to get a lot of practice this week and next.
“The kids are feeling confident, the parents are feeling really confident,” she said.
Some of the girls on the team had not played much before this year because of COVID-19. For many of them, this is only their first or second year playing softball.
“There’s a lot of talent and they have some really good team spirit,” Goulet said of why the team was still able to be so successful even with those limitations.
For those who want to watch the tournament but can’t travel to Vancouver, the games are available to view online at www.district4wa.com.
“If you see our girls in the community between now and then, pat them on the back, give them some encouragement,” Goulet said.