Liberty’s return to state tourney is short-lived

June 5, 2014

By Greg Farrar Madison O'Connor (left), Liberty High School sophomore catcher, gets Bainbridge baserunner Riley Gregoire out at home plate in the fourth inning on a bases-loaded single, during their 3A state tournament game May 30 in Lacey.

By Greg Farrar
Madison O’Connor (left), Liberty High School sophomore catcher, gets Bainbridge baserunner Riley Gregoire out at home plate in the fourth inning on a bases-loaded single, during their 3A state tournament game May 30 in Lacey.

The Liberty High School fastpitch team’s postseason magic came to an end May 30 after two straight losses in the 3A state tournament at Lacey’s Regional Athletic Complex. Read more

Patriots unsatisfied with 3-1 win over Thunderbirds

April 4, 2013

If the Liberty High School scoreboard was functioning during the softball team’s matchup against Sammamish, it would have shown a 3-1 victory for the Patriots.

The March 28 win against the Totems didn’t feel like much of an achievement for the Liberty coaches and players, though.

By Greg Farrar Miranda Bukantz, Liberty High School catcher, grins as she prepares to put out Haley Newton, of Sammamish, on a double play, to retire the side March 28 during the third inning of the Patriots’ 3-1 win over the Totems.

By Greg Farrar
Miranda Bukantz, Liberty High School catcher, grins as she prepares to put out Haley Newton, of Sammamish, on a double play, to retire the side March 28 during the third inning of the Patriots’ 3-1 win over the Totems.

“We won, but we really didn’t win,” first-year Liberty coach Zach Bartholomew said. “Mentally, it was a disaster and to play in this league, you’ve got to be better than that.”

Read more

First-round loss leaves room to grow for Liberty High School’s youths

May 31, 2012

Two unearned runs in an error-riddled bottom of the first inning proved to be an insurmountable lead as the Liberty High School Patriots’ fastpitch team lost to Everett in the first round of the 3A state tournament May 25.

Everett starting pitcher Lexi Levin took control after that, surrendering only one run in the top of the fourth on a steal of home.

Although the quick exit from the state tournament was not what Liberty had in mind, head coach Brian Hartman said he knows that the return of Liberty to the state tournament is a return to normalcy.

“It’s a big deal,” Hartman said. “The program’s kind of back where it belongs. I think we’re about ready to start another streak here. We had a 12-year run here. It’s fun seeing everyone here. It means you’re back playing with the elite. You’re one of the top programs in the state and that’s where we expect to be.”

Hartman said he thinks the several-year layoff and relative post-season inexperience was evident in his young team.

“I saw a team that hadn’t been to the state tournament in a few years,” he said. “They looked a little bit nervous to start the game, we made a few errors, definitely wasn’t our best game of the year. But we had a chance to beat a team that was 21-1. Like I told a few other people, I’m the happiest coach in the world to be here. There are a few other teams sitting at home right now that aren’t here. I’m proud of them. I’m disappointed that we lost, but Everett’s a great team.”

Hartman said he knew his team had some opportunities, but just weren’t able to string enough hits together off Levin.

Read more

Liberty softball team falls short in state tournament

June 5, 2008

Liberty’s Kate Faoro steals second base, beating the throw to Enumclaw shortstop Taylor Franich in first round fastpitch state playoff action. Photo by Greg Farrar

At the 3A state softball tournament, Liberty High School showed up. That was enough for head coach Brian Hartman. Read more