Jude Binkley staff writer
The varsity Norman softball team will be playing in the Division 7 Southern Section CIF Playoffs following their drawing into the playoff pool Monday morning. This is the first time in 20 years that the team has made the playoffs and comes after the team went 9-9-1 in the regular season. They will travel to Mira Costa to take on Wiseburn DaVinci this coming Thursday.
The team gathered together Monday morning during third period to check if they had made the tournament. The team qualified as an at-large bid from the Ocean League after submitting a petition due to their record being above .500.
“We definitely worked really hard this season. And even though some of our wins weren’t from league games, those were the wins that helped get us to our 9-9-1 record,” Senior co-captain Estella ‘Chosen’ Rosen said. “We’re very excited that we got a playoff spot.”
The team’s success making the playoffs comes from their season-long winning mentality and treating every game like it was a playoff. Softball’s success can also be attributed to their strong start, going 6-1-1 to open their historic season also greatly helped their chances.
“I think we’ve had some pretty good players throughout my four years. But, I think the team mentality this year was kind of just like, ‘We’re getting to the playoffs,’ from the very beginning,” Rosen said. “I like that feeling of having it come true, and getting to this is pretty incredible. So we’re all extremely excited.”
Looking to the first round of play, Wiseburn DaVinci has had a strong season. The team went 12-5 in the regular season and took first place in Mulholland League. Rosen expects the Normans to have a challenge, but believes they can win due to having a stronger showing against common opponents. Most notably Lawndale, whom the Normans defeated twice this year while the Wolves dropped both of their games against them. To prepare for this game, softball will have extensive practice in the preceding two days.
“I think starting from the beginning and that push towards playoffs and debating absolutely fueled us to get here,” Rosen said.