Nokomis' Mia Coots delivers a pitch in the Class B North softball title game at Coffin Field in Brewer in June 2021. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik / BDN

The 2022 high school softball season for the Nokomis High School Warriors ended too soon.

“Way prematurely,” said longtime head coach J.D. McLellan, whose top-seeded Warriors were upset in the Class B North quarterfinals by eighth seed Winslow 6-3.

Winslow ended up winning its second consecutive B North title before losing to Gardiner 10-9 in the state championship game.

It was a familiar journey for Nokomis, which has come up short several years in a row in its attempt to capture its first regional championship. The team went 15-1 during the regular season last year, following a season in which they won three playoff games to reach the B North final only to lose to Winslow 10-9.

The Warriors hope to change that this season. They are the only remaining undefeated team in Class B North entering a Thursday game against Cony of Augusta.

The Warriors were 8-0 and had outscored its opponents 102-8. The only close games were 5-2 victories over Lawrence of Fairfield and Hermon.

The catalyst for Nokomis’ resurgence is dominant pitcher Mia Coots, one of the state’s best.

The junior has a lot of life on her riseball and a nasty changeup among the five pitches in her arsenal.

She pitched a 20-strikeout perfect game against Hermon in a 1-0 win last season and hasn’t allowed more than two runs in a game this season.

Coots said the team is anxious to atone for last year’s early playoff departure.

“We are motivated. Absolutely. We’re working hard to reset the past and show them our future,” said Coots, citing people who are undermining the team due to its playoff history.

“But this team is so different. The chemistry is unreal. We’re working together as a team. We have a goal and we’re all working toward that goal together,” Coots said.

The Warriors graduated just one starter off last year’s team in center fielder Jordyn Condon.

“We want to do well in the playoffs this year. We want to see how far we can go,” said senior catcher Megan Watson. “We have been working really hard.”

The Warriors have plenty of speed at the top of the order in senior shortstop and leadoff hitter Camryn King, senior second baseman Hope Brooks and freshman center fielder Raegen King, Camryn’s sister.

“Cam can really fly and her sister can, too,” McLellan said.

All three are good hitters and aggressive on the basepaths.

“Our goal this year is to score more runs,” McLellan said. “So we’ve changed our practice format and have spent more time on offense. I know they can play defense. Not putting enough runs on the board is how we got beat last year.”

Watson is the cleanup hitter with sophomore third baseman Jenna Sawtelle, Coots and sophomore first baseman Addison Hawthorne being the run producers in the middle of the order.

Junior left fielder Sydney King, no relation to Camryn and Raegan, and sophomore left fielder-designated hitter Hailey Reynolds will be called upon to deliver at the bottom of the order along with junior right fielder-designated hitter Rachel Creswell.

Nokomis has scored at least 10 runs in all of its games except the Lawrence and Hermon games. That includes a 12-0 win over Winslow.