The Carroll Softball team hopes to build off their 2016 campaign that saw them capture the Cascade Conference's Eastern Division title.
"We had a young team last year," Coach Aaron Jackson said. "We have a young team this year, but that experience we gained from winning the Eastern Division and playing in the postseason is invaluable for this group."
The title may have shocked some of their conference opponents, but the Saints enjoyed playing the underdog role.
"We didn't really go into the season expecting to do that," Tianna Sell said. "Then we played our game all season and when we put ourselves in position to possibly win it. We went out and took care of business when we needed to."
The Saints continued to improve despite last season's success. Carroll brought in 10 freshman to bolster their team.
"The biggest thing is using all the players that we have," Brittany Smith said. "We have 22 of them. And each one adds something to each position and we have a lot of competition for us."
Twenty-two players are four more than last year. The extra bodies and talent give Aaron Jackson belief they can exceed the high marks of last season.
"To win the Cascade Conference," Jackson said, "and host the conference tournament here and ultimately make the national tournament come May and play all the way into June."
Carroll returns to action Friday with a double header against Northwest Christian University.