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GNAC Insider Highlights Softball, Ribich
In two seasons as Central Washington's head coach, Larabee has claimed a GNAC Championship and has won the GNAC regular-season title the past two years.
In two seasons as Central Washington's head coach, Larabee has claimed a GNAC Championship and has won the GNAC regular-season title the past two years.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

PORTLAND, Ore. – With the softball season approaching, GNAC Insider welcomed Central Washington head softball coach Mike Larabee and Montana State Billings sports information director Evan O’Kelly to discuss the ninth-annual Desert Stinger. Also joining the show was Western Oregon runner David Ribich, who achieved a record sub-four minute mile at the Univ. of Washington Invitational last weekend. Insider kicked off Tuesday at 7 p.m., Pacific, and will be hosted by Rob Lowery.

In two seasons with Central Washington, Larabee has led the Wildcats to two regular-season titles and a GNAC Championship. In 2016, CWU advanced to the Division II West Super Regional after going 42-17. Central Washington is the frontrunner to win the 2018 GNAC title after receiving 59 points and six of eight first-place votes in the GNAC Softball Preseason Coaches Poll. The ‘Cats open the season on Friday at the Desert Stinger, hosted by Montana State Billings, in Las Vegas, Nev. In Larabee’s two seasons with Central Washington, the Wildcats have gone 7-3 in the tournament, outscoring opponents 66-39.

Speaking of the Desert Stinger, O’Kelly has played a key role in facilitating the three-day event during the past four seasons. The tournament features 28 teams from seven Division II conferences, which includes seven teams from the GNAC. The tournament will be held from Feb. 2-4, at Majestic Park and will feature 70 games within seven fields. The Yellowjackets open the tournament against Mary (N.D.) and take on three West region rivals.

Ribich is coming off a career performance after he ran a sub-four minute mile last weekend. Competing in the elite heat of the event at the UW Invitational on Saturday, Ribich finished third with a time of 3:58.88. He became the 501st athlete in U.S. history to run under four minutes and is the fourth fastest time in the event in Division II history. The GNAC record performance also automatically qualifies Ribich for the NCAA Championships in March. The Wolves return to action on Feb. 9, when they visit Seattle for the Husky Classic.

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