Olentangy Orange High School softball coach Bruce Leary is more concerned about how much his team improves than the number of victories it earns.

Olentangy Orange High School softball coach Bruce Leary is more concerned about how much his team improves than the number of victories it earns.

Leary, who has a record of 194-57 over the last 12 seasons at Bloom-Carroll and Grandview, understands that it could take time to establish a winning tradition with a team that has no seniors and only one player with varsity experience.

"I have to keep in mind (the situation) and be patient," said Leary, whose team opens Tuesday at Bexley and plays host to Olentangy Liberty on Wednesday. "I'd say my expectations are that we get better as the season goes along. I'm expecting that this year. As far as winning ballgames goes, I don't have any expectations."

The roster is comprised of junior Chelsea Moran (IF), sophomores Catrina Constancio (OF), Alex Achenbach (IF/OF), Maureen Flanagan (IF), Taylor McConnell (C), Katie Moran (IF) and Alex Morgan (P) and freshmen Abby Davidson (IF/P), Alexis Evanko (IF/OF), Bethany Hoyer (OF), Lauren Hunsinger (IF/C), Erin Kemerer (OF), Sabrina Lewis (OF), Ali Phillips (OF/C) and Jenny Sims (IF/OF).

McConnell is a transfer from Liberty, where she was the starting catcher last season and batted .265 with 12 RBI.

As of last Friday, the only other player who had solidified a starting position was Morgan, who will be the No. 1 pitcher.

"We're trying kids at multiple positions," Leary said. "We're trying to find combinations that work. I'm still finding out what these athletes are capable of. It's a great group to work with. They have good work ethic and character and an eagerness to learn.

"I think we're pretty (sound) in all aspects of the game. We need to improve in all aspects, but I don't think we have any weaknesses."

Orange, which is in Division II but is expected to move to Division I next season, is in the OCC-Capital Division with Big Walnut, Delaware, Franklin Heights, Mount Vernon, New Albany and Watkins Memorial. Hilliard Bradley will join the league next season.

Big Walnut won the OCC-Capital last season at 9-1, ahead of Watkins Memorial (7-3), Liberty (6-4), Dublin Scioto (5-5), New Albany (3-7) and Franklin Heights (0-10). Liberty and Scioto now are in the OCC-Cardinal.

The Pioneers will open league play April 3 at Mount Vernon.

"I'm not very familiar with the teams in our league," Leary said. "We're discussing what our team goals are. My goal is just to compete (for the league title)."

Leary knows what it takes to contend for a championship. During the last nine seasons at Bloom-Carroll, the Bulldogs won five MSL-Buckeye titles, three Division III district titles (2004, 2006, 2007) and two state championships (2006, 2007).

That's why athletics director Tony Milano hired Leary.

"He's got a lot of experience building teams," Milano said. "He's one who knows how to build relationships and get the best out of his kids."

At a glance

•Coach: Bruce Leary, first season

•Opener: Tuesday at Bexley

•Key players: Taylor McConnell and Alex Morgan