The Aegis

Varsity Q&A: Bel Air softball’s Kyrsten Coppage talks about the Bobcats’ regional championship

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Navigating the tough Upper Chesapeake Bay Athletic Conference softball schedule was tough for Bel Air, as the Bobcats struggled against some of the best teams in the state.

But Bel Air came through that slate battle-tested and is playing its best softball at just the right time. The Bobcats closed the regular season with a 9-2 win over John Carroll, which went on to finish as Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference runner-up.


Bel Air ran through the Class 3A North Region II tournament winning three games by a combined score of 39-2, including a 10-0 victory over Towson in Wednesday’s final.

Senior pitcher Kyrsten Coppage spoke to The Aegis after the win. (Editor’s note: some questions and answers have been lightly edited for clarity).


What are the emotions like right now after winning the regional championship?

We’re all pretty excited about it, especially since the season we had this year. We have a very young team this year so it’s very developmental. Winning regionals was just a jump start for all the younger players. It shows how much being excited about something can push how the team does.

Was there a turning point you noticed for this team?

It started probably halfway through the season. We played a really good game against one of the top teams that no one’s beaten. We were one run away from winning. It showed everybody how good we really are. It showed we weren’t losing because we weren’t good, but that we were that close to winning. That changed the tone, we got better attitudes because we knew we could win.

How much pressure does it put on you and other seniors with a young team to be leaders and role models?

I feel being a senior, my attitude reflects onto them. I can’t let them down. I can’t show them if I’m down because they’ll think, ‘Oh, she’s been on the team for four years. If she’s down, why am I trying.’ I have to put in all the effort I can and just be positive and try to hype everybody up.

Did you guys have a sense when you took the field for the final Wednesday you were about to do something special?

We’re just playing to play right now because nobody expected us to make it this far. Making it this far, it feels like, ‘What could go wrong?’ We already beat everybody’s expectations.


That being said, I’m sure you guys aren’t ready to stop.

Definitely not. We’re trying to go all the way, but we’re taking it one game at a time.

Next up is Reservoir. What do you want to carry from your regional run into that game?

Probably the attitude of keeping it up. When we’re excited, we’re cheering. Things go good because we’re all hype, we’re all loose. There’s not as much stress on each player if we’re all in the game.

How long have you been playing softball?

I’ve been playing since I was 5, so about 13 years.


What is it about the game that keeps you in it and passionate about it all these years?

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Probably finding somebody to play for. This year my coach [Dan Funk], he passed away. I have been seeing him for 10 years. Every game I’m playing for him. We have a quote: “Find your ‘Why’ and ‘Who.’” I think that’s been part of why I’ve been playing recently.

Now it’s time for some really hard-hitting questions about the team. Who would win a team dance-off.

Lizzy [Zarsona]. She really just finds her moments, always at the best moments.

If you’re meeting for a team dinner or a team cookout, who would want to cook it, and who would you not want near the kitchen?

I’d probably trust Jadyn [Betters] with the cooking. Who I don’t want to cook is probably Sofia [Gallahue], I don’t know if I’d trust her with my food.


Do you have any team good luck charms or superstitions?

Before every away game we have to play the same song. “Megan’s Piano.” It’s always the last song that gets played. And then I’ve also brought to the team not crossing the bats when they’re in the dugout. That’s a big superstition of mine.