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League play begins for softball, tennis. Baseball tied for first.

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SOFTBALL (0-0, 5-3)
Wednesday, Moses Lake home.
Wenatchee has taken four of the last six games from Moses Lake to put a halt to a negative skid for the Panthers. From 2000 to ’09 the Chiefs defeated WHS 23 times in 24 games. The last two seasons the two teams have split their league doubleheaders and the games have been close – WHS by 2, MLS by 1, MLS by 1 and WHS by 1. In both years they have met again in district competition with the Purple and Gold victorious both times. Moses Lake leads the series 51-41. In 44 games coach Brent Grothe is on the short end of a 13-31 record. These will be the Panther’s first league games.

BOYS SOCCER (1-5, 2-7)
Wednesday, Moses Lake home.
When they played last month the Chiefs edged the Panthers 2-1 and have won two in a row from Wenatchee. This is the first time since 1995 that MLHS has taken two in succession from WHS. Since 1996 the Panthers are 17-6 in the series and lead overall 23-14. Coach Dennis Tronson has won 16 times in 21 matches.

Thursday, Skyline (4-1, 6-2) away.
This is a return match for the Panthers. A year ago the Spartans came to town and topped Wenatchee 2-0. The squad from Sammamish has won their last four matches. This is Wenatchee’s last nonleague match.

Saturday, Davis, home.
Wenatchee opened league play against the Pirates last month and lost 3-1 in Yakima. WHS and DHS have faced each other 50 times since WHS started soccer in 1986 with the Panthers winning 20 of those matches. In the Apple Bowl Wenatchee is 12-13, and Tronson is 11-15 vs. the Pirates.

The next Wenatchee High win will be the 200th in the program’s history.

BASEBALL (2-0, 6-2)
Tuesday, Moses Lake away.
While Wenatchee grabbed a share of first place with a sweep of Eisenhower to begin league play, Moses Lake did the opposite, dropping a pair to Walla Walla. For the past five seasons the Panthers and Chiefs have split a dozen games, in fact since 1996 they’re dead even after 32 games. Since the league started in 1967 the two schools have played 100 times with the Panthers holding a 54-46 advantage.

GIRLS TENNIS (0-0, 3-0)
Tuesday, West Valley home.
Due to inclement weather the tennis teams have had two matches postponed and haven’t swung a racquet in competition for 17 days. That should end today as they host West Valley of Yakima in their final nonleague dual match of the spring. This match was originally set for March 31st. In a half dozen matches with the Rams the Panthers have won five.

Thursday, Moses Lake, away.
This may sound hard to believe, but the Panthers and Chiefs have played 35 times and nary a loss for the former. At Moses Lake WHS is 20-0. In a dozen years coach Norm Armstrong is 12-0 vs. the Chiefs.

Friday & Saturday, Tri-City Invitational.
This is the second year in a row the Panthers have participated in the event, and they also participated in in 1994. This is the 32nd annual tournament. The affair combines the girls and boys teams in scoring and last spring Wenatchee placed second.

BOYS TENNIS (0-0, 3-0)
Tuesday, West Valley home.
Like the gals, this is a match rescheduled from the last day of March. The boys have faced West Valley seven times and have yet to lose a match.

Thursday, Moses Lake, away.
The match with Moses Lake will be the first league competition of the season. You might say Wenatchee has dominated the series. The Panthers lead 33-2 since 1978. They have a 21-match win streak and during that run have outscored Moses Lake 132-12…the closest MLHS has come is twice they lost 5-2. Coach Ron Zielinski is 24-1 vs. the Chiefs.

Friday & Saturday, Tri-Cities Invitational.
The guys will join the gals for a couple of days and participate in the invitational on courts throughout the Tri-City area. Joining the completion will be four teams from the Spokane area, several from around Boise plus Bainbridge from Western Washington.

Spring Training…what a fantastic experience.
Two weeks ago today Rexine and I pointed the car toward Peoria and for 13 days had an absolutely extraordinary adventure. Had never been to Arizona before, let alone spring training. We saw the final three Seattle games at the Peoria Sports Complex…and all Mariner wins. What a tremendous place to experience America’s pastime…beautiful facilities, hotdogs, sun, walking distance from the hotel, very friendly guest service folks, hotdogs, batting practice, excellent seats, half-price stuff on last day and hotdogs.

What a trip. Had a ball. What a country...a truly big and beautiful country.

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