By: John Raffel
Beaverton pitcher set for banner softball season
Beaverton softball coach Aaron Wentworth can’t say enough about his standout pitcher Faith Howe. It’s her fourth varsity season.
Howe had a 34-4 pitching record last year and was close to 400 strikeouts. Her ERA has been below 1.00.
It was her best year. She earned first-team all-state honors as a junior and honorable mention acclaim as a sophomore.
“She just gets better every year,” Wentworth said. “I’m hoping this is her best year yet. She’s strong and works all year on her pitching.”
Howe started softball when she was 5 years old.
“My mom encouraged me to do it but didn’t force it on me,” Howe recalled. “It’s something I want to do. My friends were doing it too.”
She started pitching when she was 9.
“Everyone’s trying it at that age and the team needed a pitcher,” Howe said. “My mother was a pitcher when she played and my sister pitched before me.”
Highlights for Howe included her team winning a conference championship in her sophomore season. “Last year, we were district champs and beat the previous school record of wins of 38.”
Howe has already made her collegiate commitment to NCAA Division II Lincoln Memorial in Tennessee.
“She had gone down there a few times,” Wentworth said. “She had family down here and had interest in pitching in warmer weather.”
“I’ve been playing for travel teams in North Carolina on and off,” Howe said. “One of my coaches said ‘hey check his place out.’ The coach was great.”
Howe has also been a .350 to .400 hitter.
“She’s seen a lot of softball and plays a ton of games,” Wentworth said. “She plays all summer and plays on some really good travel teams. You see that constant good pitching and hitting, and you’ll be good at both.”
Howe has also pitched a few no-hit games during her career.
She also plays hockey in the Midland area but it’s been her softball career that’s taking her places.
Wentworth feels that with Howe leading the way, his team can go far.
“I hope so,” he said. “We have a lot of returning kids.”
“Everyone has a long shot for a state title by the end of the season,” Howe said. “Right now, we’re taking it game by game. We’ll start trying for a conference title, then district and go from there.”
As a pitcher, “I don’t get rattled very easily,” Howe said. “My curve ball is my go-to (pitch). I’ve been working on my changeup and rise ball.”
When it comes to being a better hitter, “to me, it’s a focus thing,” she said. “If a pitcher is not quite throwing her hardest, I have a hard time having to wait and hold back on the pitch.”