Chesterton Tribune



High Expectations for CHS Softball

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Here we go.

The Chesterton softball team opens its 2018 campaign tonight at home against Hobart with plans for a big year. First pitch is slated for 4:30 p.m.

The Trojans battled through a plethora of injuries last year on their way to a 24-7 campaign and a Sectional title. All of that is in the rearview mirror and their sights are set on a deep post-season run.

“One of our goals this season is to be more consistent in all phases of our game all at the same time,” Chesterton head coach LouAnn Hopson said. “We hope to be prepared to make some noise at tournament time.”

Hopson’s squad returns six starters, including two in the pitching circle, several of which missed time with injuries last year.

“We’ve got a lot of experience returning,” Hopson said. “We had a great season last year even though we suffered through some injuries. We lost (shortstop) Kristi Stevenson early. (Catcher) Shelby Grimm was sidelined for a while. We lost (outfielder) Maddie Hamady in the Sectional and (2nd baseman) Hailey Johansen) in the Regional.”

Hamady and Johansen are gone due to graduation, but St. Louis commit Stevenson is back, as is Notre Dame bound Sheby Grimm.

Stevenson hit .395 as a sophomore with 19 RBI’s and Grimm was a first team All-State, All-DAC and All-Region selection after hitting .417 with 25 RBIs and a .726 on-base percentage.

Senior Kari LaFreniere will attend Indiana Tech after graduation and was an All-DAC selection in the outfield, while sophomore Cassidy Grimm will man third base and head to Notre Dame when her high school career is over.

LaFreniere hit .321 with 16 RBIs, eight doubles and five home runs. Grimm hit at a .404 clip with 26 RBIs, 12 doubles, two triples and two home runs.

Also returning to the lineup are outfielders Faith Matta and utility starter Maddy Snemis. Matta hit .364, while Snemis hit .415 with 19 RBIs.

“With all the injuries we had last year, the next player in line stepped up,” Hopson said. “Our biggest problem was with some inconsistent play at times. I’m sure some of that had to do with the injuries and because our young players were learning on the job.”

In the field, the Trojans also get the return of juniors Noelle Michael (.292 batting average), Marney Sisson (.417 average, 11 RBIs, 6 doubles) and sophomore Micaela Iacovetti.

In the pitching circle, the Trojans are led by the combination of senior Lauren Anderson (13-3 overall, 2.12 ERA) and junior Lexi Benko (9-2 overall, 2.21 ERA).

Anderson, a Santa Clara commit and All-DAC selection, also hit .281 with 14 RBIs. Benko, committed to Indiana State, hit .347 with 25 RBIs, six doubles and two home runs.

Depth in the pitching circle comes from senior Kelly Carr and Hayley Edmonds (Kankakee College commit).



Posted 3/27/2018




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