Legendary basketball coach Bobby Knight said that the best thing about a
freshman is they become sophomores.
Chesterton softball coach LouAnn Hopson hopes that’s true as the 2010 season
gets underway on Saturday at 11 a.m. against Lowell at CHS.
“Our biggest problem was inconsistent play (last year),” Hopson said.
“Sometimes from game to game and sometimes from inning to inning.”
The Trojans started a pair of freshman last year in third baseman Sammie
Howard and shortstop Jaren Lynch. They also started two sophomores in
outfielder/catcher Ryan Bozak and outfielder Heather Overla.
“Most of our problems last year were our youth,” Hopson said. “We had a lot
of inexperience on the field in starting roles. This year we hope that the
playing experience from last season will lead to more consistency.”
Chesterton returns virtually the entire infield with Howard, Lynch and
senior Kathleen Maple (second). Senior catcher Sam Gross also returns.
“First base is really our only need in the infield and I think we have
several people who can play there,” Hopson said. “(Tarra) Fine, (Vanessa)
Salamanca and our new faces (Sarah Hudon, Megan Matheny) are talented and
should be able to contribute some playing time in several positions.”
In the outfield, Overla returns to patrol center field, while Bozak should
man right field. Overla is the top returning hitter for the Trojans with a
.350 batting average. Sophomore Jeanette Sosnowski is the odds on favorite
for the left field job.
“Sosnowski should slide into the other outfield job,” Hopson said. “With all
the inexperience we had last year, we still managed to put together some
good wins and compete in some other games.”
The key to softball, as always, will come in the pitcher’s circle where the
rubber has been moved back three feet this year.
Junior Taylor Harlow took the bulk of the work last season en route to a
2.45 ERA. She should get help from junior Krista Bottos, freshman Taylor
Bissonnette and freshman Megan Tymorek.
“Pitching performance will be the real key to our success this season, as it
is for all programs,” Hopson said. “Last year our pitching was not deep
enough for the varsity level. Most of the time it will be Harlow and we’ll
see how much help she can get from Bottos, Bissonnette and Tymorek.”