After finishing 10-14 last year, coach Russ Montgomery’s Northmor softball team will have to integrate eight freshmen into the squad while making up for the loss of four key graduates.
Gone are pitcher Shelbey Lilly, catcher Lydia Farley, second baseman Lindsey Wiseman and left fielder Andrea Weis.
“The pitching, catching, defense and offense that these four brought to the game will be truly missed by the Lady Knights,” said the coach.
Seniors Cristianna Boggs and Kelsie Fike and juniors Lily Tate and Aly Blunk are key returnees for the squad. Boggs is a four-year starter who earned All-Ohio mention last year in Division III and will play centerfield while being counted on to provide offense and base-running speed as the leadoff hitter. Three-year starter Tate is expected to move from third base to catcher, while Blunk, also a three-year starter, will play shortstop. Fike is in her fourth year with the program. While she missed most of last year due to injury, Montgomery noted she is “back in full force at first base”.
Senior Alison Ivy and freshmen Megan Adkins and Maddie Hoverland are expected to share the pitching duties. Also on the roster are junior Maggie Singer, sophomore Michalea Zegar and freshmen Julieanne Kincaid, Rosie Sklenicka, Joycieanne Cooper, Morgan Wiseman, Megan McGlothlin and Stacia Nogueira.
“We’re still trying to find out what these eight freshmen are made of,” said Montgomery. “Stepping into a varsity role isn’t the easiest thing to do as a freshman.”
The coach noted that he expects tough competition from the KMAC, which contains a Division III Final Four team in Cardington and a Division IV Final Four squad in Danville.
“This is the level we want to attain,” he said. “Minimizing mistakes is a priority.”
Rob Hamilton can be reached at 419-946-3010, ext. 1807. Connect with him on Twitter at @SportsMCS