Calvin Bingham has had a long career as softball head coach for Bear River, and before Saturday night Bingham led the Bears to 504 wins and 10 championships.

However, after 24 years at Bear River, Bingham has decided to retire, which made Bingham’s 11th state championship on Saturday all the sweeter for the Bears.

“I haven’t said anything to the kids but I’m sure they’ve seen it, but it’s really satisfying to go out this way,” said Bingham. “We’ve worked hard this year and it means a lot to me and I hope it was a good experience for the kids.”

It was a satisfying championship for the Bears to get revenge on Ridgeline, who beat them in last year’s championship series.

“It’s so sweet,” said Bear River senior Kate Dahle. “Since last year we’ve been beefing with them all season. What happened last year totally swapped and we came out on top this year.”

In the championship series, Dahle showed why she is committed to play at BYU. She was a big advantage for Bear River on the pitchers’ mound.

She threw eight strikeouts in Game 2 of the championship series and seven in Game 3.

“I threw it a couple times in the first game and there were a couple hitters that just could not touch it yesterday and today. I just had confidence throwing it,” Dahle said.

“We love each other and a big thing this year was we wanted to be a family. We struggled with that last year, so we made it a priority that this year we were going to not be friends, we were going to be family and we don’t treat family wrong. We included the coaches and we’re all one big family.”

Despite the win, things didn’t look good for Bear River at the beginning of the series after losing 3-2 on Friday’s opening game.

The Bears did not let that loss rattle them and used it to rally 8-4 and 12-3 back-to-back wins.

In the third game of the series, Bear River’s Kendyl Archibald came up big with a three-RBI double in the second inning, and in the third inning, she had a hit that forced a Ridgeline error and a run for Bear River.

“It’s incredibly special,” said Archibald.

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“I have grown up playing with half of these girls, and for there to be five sophomores on the team, people my own age. It was incredibly enveloping just to be surrounded by so many people that are young. We fought for this, and we have two more years to fight again.”

While it was certainly a time to celebrate a championship, Bear River also took the time to celebrate Coach Bingham on a great career.

“He means quite a bit,” said Archibald. “There were many rules that were argued that we won because he knows the game inside and out. He knows the book from cover to cover and that just really proved beneficial in this week and the games leading up to it.”

Despite his accomplishments, coach Bingham made sure to credit his girls in the win.

“They’re pretty young and most of them are pretty coachable, every once in a while you get one or two that try to tell you how to do things but this is a good bunch,” said Bingham.

“I have to give credit to our seniors. I thought we had really good senior leadership this year, they tried to bring the team together and develop a bond there that if you don’t have you have dissension and it’s going to tear you apart. But I think the seniors did a great job of bringing the team together.”