Police Send-Off for Chiawana Slowpitch Softball, Seeking 3rd State Title
Thursday, the Pasco Police Department conducted a sendoff for the Chiawana girls' slowpitch softball team, as they headed out for the 4A state tournament at the Gateway Sports Complex in Yakima. The Franklin County Sheriff's Office also participated along with County Fire District 3.
Riverhawks seeking 3rd straight 4A state slowpitch title
A few years ago, the WIAA (Washington Interscholastic Activities Association) added girls slowpitch softball as an official varsity sport. Chirawana opens play Friday against Bothell. Chiawana, if they win, will play the winner of Eastmont vs. Woodinville in the 8-team bracket.
The difference between fastpitch and slowpitch is fastpitch features the big arm windmill windup by the pitcher, and speeds usually over 50-65 MPH, while slowpitch pitchers are not allowed to use the windmill windup. They can only swing their throwing arm back to a certain position, otherwise, it's an illegal pitch.
Other eastern WA teams include Moses Lake and Central Valley from Spokane.
At the 4A Level, there are 28 schools in WA with slowpitch teams, the total number of slowpitch teams combined from 2A through 4A (the biggest) is 47.
In the Mid-Columbia Conference Chiawana, Hermiston, Walla Walla, and Pasco have fastpitch and slowpitch teams. Kamiakin, Richland, Hanford (4A) and Kennewick and Southridge (3A) only have fastpitch teams.
In 2021, Chiawana defeated Central Valley 13-12 to win the title, last year in 2022, they beat Central Valley 17-3 to win the championship. Central Valley's fastpitch team, in the spring of 2023, was knocked out of 4A Regionals by Kamiakin 23-2.
Girls slowpitch is played in the fall, while fastpitch takes place in the spring.
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Gallery Credit: Peter Richman