The Washington Post
With its familiar faces, Madison in familiar spot
Warhawks are joined by O’connell, Sherwood with loaded rosters
When Madison Coach Jim Adkins peers into his dugout at the start of softball season, he’ll see plenty of familiar faces. The Warhawks return 14 players from last year’s Virginia Class 6 state championship-winning team.
“We love the team we had last year; we have a great group returning,” Adkins said. “They all chose to return, even the players that got less playing time.”
Senior Katrina Swan, who hit the go-ahead home run in the Class 6 title game against Cosby, is one of those returners. So is senior Princeton commit Graciela Dominguez, whom multiple opposing coaches named as one of the top talents in the Virginia area.
“We like our team; we’re very excited about it,” Adkins said. “We understand there’s a lot of great teams out there that we’ll have to compete with, and that’s why we sort of lace them up and get after it.”
Not all teams are as fortunate as Madison in terms of returning experience. Some typical powers are dealing with roster overhauls and will have to reinvent themselves this spring.
Here are The Washington Post’s first rankings of the season. (Records from last season)
1. Madison (16-1) | The Warhawks start their quest for their second consecutive state title against Langley on Wednesday. 2. Bishop O’connell (21-1) |
The Knights return 2022 All-met Player of the Year Katie Kutz, who went 17-0 on the mound as a junior for the defending Washington Catholic Athletic Conference and Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association champion. Kutz, an Oklahoma State commit, will look to replicate that success. 3. Sherwood (18-2) | The Warriors are fresh off a Maryland 4A championship, the fifth title under 2022 All-met Coach of the Year Ashley Barber-strunk. The Warriors open against Churchill, one of just two teams to beat them last year. 4. Damascus (22-1) | Pitcher Isabella Digiandomenico will look to expand on a 125-strikeout junior season for the Swarmin’ Hornets in 2022. Damascus lost just one game last season, in the Maryland 3A semifinals to Linganore. 5. Maret (15-2) | In addition to being a Northwestern soccer commit, CJ Roy is one of the top pitchers in the D.C. area.
6. Potomac School (19-2) | The defending Independent School League champion should be strong despite having graduated first-team All-met shortstop Eva Butler and second-team utility player Yanna Bravewolf.
7. Tuscarora (24-1) | Louisville commit Lindsey Mullen is back for a Huskies squad looking to avenge its Virginia Class 4 title game loss, the only defeat in an otherwise flawless 2022 season.
8. Reservoir (16-1) | Maggie Frisvold and Courtney Johnson, both Maryland Baltimore County commits, will have one more shot at a state championship out of Howard County. 9. Woodgrove (24-3) | Virginia Tech commit Michelle Chatfield and the Wolverines will look to defend their region title crown. 10. Chesapeake (18-2) | The reigning Anne Arundel County champion will open with a matchup against Old Mill. On the bubble: Battlefield, Briar Woods, Jackson-reed, Loudoun Valley, Mclean, Severna Park, Stone Bridge.