LEROY — Pine River’s softball team is entering the key weeks of the regular season with players like sophomore Kassy Nelson optimistic that the Bucks can be playing at their very best.

“We started having more fun as a team, we started having good defense,” said Nelson last week after her team swept Evart in a couple of mercy rule games.  “We’re starting to click. We’ve been kind of on a roller coaster. We do good and then bad and then good.”

The Bucks, like other teams, took a few weeks to get into the proper rhythm after a very slow spring.”

Nelson has been a shortstop or center fielder. She played on varsity as a freshman and said she’s improved “quite a bit. I see the ball come off the bat.”

The team is playing well offensively and defensively.

Pitching has also been sparking the Bucks. “Jamie Justin has been our go-to girl,” Nelson said. ”We want to play as a team and have fun doing it.”

The Bucks are hosting districts and play home next Tuesday against Lake City in predistrict action.

This week, the Bucks wrap up the Highland schedule

“We’ve split with Beal City and we split with Manton,” Nelson said.

To win every game, the Bucks need “to play together as a unit and enjoy ourselves while we’re doing it.”