Softball: La Caada, Mayfield earn No. 1 spots in the preseason CIF-SS coaches’ top 10 poll. But here’s the bigger question (OK, not really bigger), where is La Caada in Friday’s Star-News preseason rankings?

How can you not love spring? The weather calls for opening the sun roof, throwing on some shades and watching a little softball three times a week. It’s that time of year, and as the winter playoffs wind down I’m beginning to highly anticipate what should be an interesting season. Let’s start off with the preseason CIF-SS coaches’ top 10 poll. La Caada and Mayfield each earn No. 1 rankings in Division 5 and 6, respectively. La Salle, San Marino, Duarte, San Gabriel Mission and Alverno also earned spots in the poll released Monday evening. Do you like the spots? If not, don’t worry. It’s a preseason poll, meaning they’ll shape out as the season wears on. But if you want to have your say in the Star-News preseason rankings, now’s the time to give your input. Is La Caada the No. 1 team hands down? You can’t argue with the depth, speed and power of the Spartans that features quite the power hitter (Anna Edwards) and arguably the best 1-2 punch in pitchers Lauren Cox and Lauren O’Leary. Will San Marino’s Michelle Floyd be as dominant now that the pitching circle has moved from 40 to 43 feet? Who benefits from the distance, and how will non-club players adjust to the distance while at the plate? Look for Mayfield’s Katie Clancy to benefit from the distance change and expect some good movement. La Salle loses a lot of power in Allie Forillo, now at LMU. The Lancers still boast the always-reliable Sterling Shuster, but will it be enough to compete in Division 3? Here’s hoping San Gabriel Mission continues its remarkable run of another deep playoff run. But here’s a real downer: Maranatha’s Annie Sommers is out for the season with a torn ACL. The Boston College-bound star can’t be replaced. Her leadership and prowess will be missed. Like I said, it’ll be an interesting season, so what’s your take?

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE CIF-SS PRESEASON TOP 10 SOFTBALL POLL

DIVISION 3
1. Ayala
2. Warren
3. North Torrance
4. Chino Hills
5. Torrance
6. South Hills
7. La Salle
8. Oaks Christian
9. Palos Verdes
10. Mira Costa
Others: Downey

DIVISION 5
1. La Caada

2. Calvary Chapel/SA
3. Costa Mesa
4. Savanna
5. San Marino
6. Hemet
7. Cabrillo Lompoc
8. San Jacinto
9. Marymount
10. Duarte

DIVISION 6
1. Mayfield
2. San Gabriel Mission

3. Paraclete
4. Kern Valley
5. Rosamond
6. Yucca Valley
7. Alverno
8. Carpinteria
9. Capistrano Valley Christian
10. Calvary Chapel/Downey

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  • shfan

    Duarte at number 10 in D-5? Wow. Im disappointed we moved to D-3. Tell Fred to look into the CIF polls. He seems to have something against South Hills.

  • Rio Hondo League Fan

    La Canada definitely deserves the number one position in both polls. They have the depth.

    40 to 43 feet? The only answer to this question is who has the best ball movement, especially breaking closer to the plate?

    Annie Sommers lost for the year? What tragic news. Annie, your days of further stardom are ahead. Please get well soon. You will be missed.

  • softballfan

    La Salle at D-3…Lets see if Coach Diaz can really coach…

  • Fastpitch

    San Marino’s Michelle Floyd is the real deal from 43 feet. Michelle will dominate out there. She is an athlete to watch.

  • Softball Fan

    The La Canada and San Marino games will be fun to watch. There are D1 players on both sides, each team has great pitching and strong hitting and fielding. The games will be determined by who makes the least amount of errors! Can’t wait!

  • Rio Hondo League Fan

    I think there is a good chance La Canada and San Marino could carry the competition all the way to the CIF championship. I see one of the teams ahead of San Marino is Costa Mesa. I believe Floyd had 26 or 27 strikeouts against them in CIF playoffs (10 inning game) last year.

    Wouldn’t it be nice to see an all Rio Hondo league championship game?

    And what about the bats at Temple City? I heard much work has been spent there to improve their batting. Can they spoil either La Canada or San Marino’s pitching?

  • Anonymous

    Why will Katie Clancy benefit more by going to the 43 feet?

    I think all the top pitchers will do just fine at 43 feet. If they played club at 16 or older they pitched from 43 feet last year all season long against generally stronger batters.