xml:space="preserve">
xml:space="preserve">
Advertisement
Advertisement

Howard County softball senior spotlight

Members of the Howard County softball senior class (clockwise from top left) Centennial's Lauren Marcotte, Glenelg's Kathryn Hoffman, Hammond's Makenzie Brooks, Howard's Paige Eakes, Marriotts Ridge's Madi Costigan and Wilde Lake's Rachel Van Osdel.
Members of the Howard County softball senior class (clockwise from top left) Centennial's Lauren Marcotte, Glenelg's Kathryn Hoffman, Hammond's Makenzie Brooks, Howard's Paige Eakes, Marriotts Ridge's Madi Costigan and Wilde Lake's Rachel Van Osdel.

The announcement officially canceling the spring sports season for Maryland public schools as a result of the coronavirus pandemic means the realization of an unfortunate reality — the high school careers for an entire senior class of athletes has come to a premature end.

In the history books, there will be no county, regional or state champions for the 2020 spring season. All-County honors will not be awarded for the first time in decades.

Advertisement

Still, the absence of athletic contests does not diminish the fact that the 2020 senior class of spring athletes merits recognition. With that in mind, we reached out to all of the area programs to get information on their respective senior classes.

We are running the packages featuring each of the spring sports over the next week. Here is the release schedule:

Advertisement

Thursday, May 21: Boys Lacrosse

Friday, May 22: Girls Lacrosse

Monday, May 25: Baseball

Tuesday, May 26: Softball

Wednesday, May 27: Tennis

Thursday, May 28: Track

SOFTBALL

Atholton's Riley Law waits for a pitch during a playoff softball game against Long Reach at Long Reach High School on Thursday, May 10, 2018.
Atholton's Riley Law waits for a pitch during a playoff softball game against Long Reach at Long Reach High School on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Jen Rynda / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

The Atholton senior class was headed by a pair of four-year varsity starters in Riley Law and Colleen Simmerly. Law has seen time in the outfield and at catcher, last season posting a .366 batting average and .857 fielding percentage. Simmerly has played almost every position on the field and still had a fielding percentage of .946 as a junior, while also posting a .377 batting average.

Zoe Baskerville, a speedy second baseman, and constantly improving first baseman Alex Gardner were each four-year members of the program. Mariana Lennon in the infield and Heather Sohn in the outfield rounded out the Raiders’ group of graduating players.

“This senior class will be remembered for their dedication to the program, their desire to improve, and energy they have brought to the Atholton Softball program over the last four years,” Atholton coach Ally O’Neill said.

Centennial's Jordan Hinz works a close game in the early innings against Hammond in 2019.
Centennial's Jordan Hinz works a close game in the early innings against Hammond in 2019. (Doug Kapustin / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

With seven seniors that have all been in the program for four years, many of whom were multi-year starters on varsity, Centennial had the makings of special team this spring.

“This group of girls has been special since the first time they walked on the field together. They love the game of softball and they love to play for each other,” Centennial coach Katie Grimm said. “It really makes my job easy as their coach. Each girl has been willing to play their role to the highest level for the team to succeed. Each of these young women have made a profound impact on my life. They are an unforgettable group.”

Jordan Hinz is a four-year starter on varsity, making second team All-County as a junior pitcher who posted a 9-4 record with a 3.31 ERA. She also hit for a .426 batting average and will be playing in college at Washington and Jefferson.

Advertisement

Lauren Marcotte has been a first team All-County shortstop every year of high school and is headed to play softball in college at Penn State University. She hit for a .460 batting average last season to go along with 22 RBI and 10 stolen bases.

Olivia Reese was a two-time All-County selection and was preparing to be a leader for the team at catcher before heading off to play at Shepard University next year, while four-year starter Sarah Sopchick settled in at second base last year and boasted one of the team’s highest on-base percentages at the plate.

Esther Kim, a first baseman, and Erin McGuire, an outfielder, were both three-year starters. McGuire hit .382 with 15 RBI and 15 runs as a junior. Sarah Phelps patrolled centerfield the last few years, boasting a big arm and the ability to be a vocal leader.

Chapelgate was poised for a bounce-back season under coach Jeff Lucas, with a quartet of seniors that had showcased strong leadership in the early-going this spring.

Pitcher and catcher Ellie Henneberg and outfielder Jessica Lucas each are previous selections to the IAAM All-Conference team. Henneberg, who was transitioning to pitcher for this season, was coming off a junior season where she hit for a .510 batting average and drove in 22 runs with nine doubles. Jess Lucas led Howard County in steals the last two years, swiping 11 bases in 2019 to go along with a .596 batting average. She will play at Bowie State next year.

Olivia Sunde, who hit .404 with 10 stolen bases as a junior, has played multiple positions during her four-year career and was set to see significant time at shortstop this spring. Sage Christianson rounded out the class for the Yellowjackets as a defensive specialist at first base throughout her career that was making the transition to catcher.

Glenelg's (21) Molly Dustin makes a hit against Northeast High School varsity softball in the Class 3A East region finals on Friday, May 19, 2017.
Glenelg's (21) Molly Dustin makes a hit against Northeast High School varsity softball in the Class 3A East region finals on Friday, May 19, 2017. (Nate Pesce / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

The four seniors for Glenelg were all dynamic players who set for big seasons.

“This group of seniors was something special and were a big part of the reason we were able to overcome our playoff deficit to River Hill [last year] and advance to the next round against La Plata,” Glenelg coach Shannon Riley said. “I am glad we did so well in playoffs last year and had some very exciting wins against Hammond and River Hill where each senior played an integral part in our success. I hope they carry these memories with them forever.”

Kathryn Hoffman was a returning All-County utility player as both an outfielder and pitcher, hitting for a .490 batting average and scoring 24 runs. She will play field hockey at the University of Delaware. Molly Dustin was a four-year varsity starter at third base, posting a .452 batting average with 18 RBI as a junior. She will be playing at Mount Saint Mary’s in college.

Luci Vallor, who will play in college at McDaniel, is a catcher who battled back from injury to earn a starting spot and hit a home run during a scrimmage this spring. Valerie Markel rounds out the graduating group and was set to contribute in right field.

Hammond's Makenzie Brooks celebrates with her teammates after blasting a two-run triple and scoring herself on an errant throw to third, breaking open, what was a close game. Hammond takes a 14-1 win over host, Centennial Tuesday afternoon in Ellicott City.
Hammond's Makenzie Brooks celebrates with her teammates after blasting a two-run triple and scoring herself on an errant throw to third, breaking open, what was a close game. Hammond takes a 14-1 win over host, Centennial Tuesday afternoon in Ellicott City. (Doug Kapustin / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Hammond had four seniors on its roster one year removed from earning a piece of the county championship with a 14-2 county record.

Makenzie Brooks was a returning All-County catcher, who will go down as one of the top defensive and offensive backstops in program history. She posted a .561 batting average to go with nine doubles, 17 RBI and 17 runs scored as a junior, while also not allowing a single base on a passed ball defensively.

Olivia Goyne was a valuable utility player who has seen time in the outfield, infield and at pitcher. She was slated to start in right field and also pitch this spring. Erika Goodwin played every game and made just one error in 2019 and was slated to be the starter in left field this year, while Kaili Ferguson was returning to the team after a year off and was going to provide outfield depth and speed on the bases.

Howard's Emily Polimeni connects with a pitch, driving in a pair of runs in the ninth inning during a softball game at Marriott Ridge High School on Wednesday, April 4.
Howard's Emily Polimeni connects with a pitch, driving in a pair of runs in the ninth inning during a softball game at Marriott Ridge High School on Wednesday, April 4. (Brian Krista / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Howard was also a co-county champion in 2019 and five seniors were returning from that squad, including four players who had been named All-County in one or both of the last two seasons.

“This 2020 Howard class was one of the best classes to come into Howard softball, with talent in every position. I feel we were robbed of an opportunity to show what could have been,” Howard coach Chuck Rice said. “I'm just so sad that the seniors didn't have a chance to show that they would have been the top of the Howard softball program in many years. This 2020 class will be the most remembered classes that I will ever coach, not just because of the pandemic but also the personalities of each of the players.”

Advertisement

Paige Eakes and Emily Polimeni are both four-year starters and were captains this spring. Eakes made All-County as a freshman and as a junior catcher, setting the Howard program record for RBI (44) in 2017 and hitting for a batting average of .460 or better each year of high school. Polimeni, who will play softball at Elizabethrown, made All-County as a sophomore and has been one of the county’s top defenders at third base.

Mary Wagenblast was a three-year starter in the outfield and made All-County last year, hitting for a .528 batting average with 16 runs scored. She will continue her softball career at the University of Scranton. Ashlyn Moynihan was a four-year player and two-year starter at second base, making All-County in 2019 after hitting .521 with six doubles and 18 RBI.

Abby Trimmer rounded out the senior group for the Lions as a two-year varsity player and was set to break into the starting lineup.

Long Reach third baseman Isabella Facey throws out Oakland Mills batter, Tamia Bydune in the third inning. The Lightning defeat the visiting Scorpions, 23-1, Wednesday afternoon in Columbia.
Long Reach third baseman Isabella Facey throws out Oakland Mills batter, Tamia Bydune in the third inning. The Lightning defeat the visiting Scorpions, 23-1, Wednesday afternoon in Columbia. (Doug Kapustin / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

For Long Reach, the group of four seniors featured a mix of experience and emerging talent.

First baseman Isabella Facey was elected as a captain, having started on varsity since she was a freshman and scoring 14 runs as a junior. Loryn Yeager was going to be the team’s starting pitcher this season.

Victoria Miller was a versatile player slated to play in the outfield and at second base this spring, while Lindsay Hall had shown great improvement during tryouts on the way to earning a starting spot in right field.

Winning pitcher, Megan Hughes gets congratulations from teammate Sam Miller after the Mustangs take an 8-5 win over visiting River Hill Friday afternoon in Marriottsville.
Winning pitcher, Megan Hughes gets congratulations from teammate Sam Miller after the Mustangs take an 8-5 win over visiting River Hill Friday afternoon in Marriottsville. (Doug Kapustin / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Marriotts Ridge has developed into one of the county’s top teams the last few seasons and this year’s group of six seniors played a major role in that.

Headlining the group are four-year varsity starters and two-time All-County standouts Madi Costigan and Megan Hughes. Costigan, who will play softball next season at Arcadia University, excelled at shortstop, pitcher (4-1, 2.22 ERA) and at the plate (.564 average, 22 runs, 22 RBI) in 2019. Hughes was also a versatile threat last year as an outfielder, pitcher (3-1, 37 strikeouts in 31 innings) and hitter (.528 average, 27 RBI, 26 runs, 10 stolen bases). She will play at Gettsburg College.

Grace Tolle was a four-year varsity player, seeing time at third base and catcher. She hit .477 with 18 RBI as a junior and is headed to play softball at Seton Hill. Pitcher, second baseman and outfielder Alex Lindahl, who will play softball next year at Hood College, is another four-year varsity player who struck out 27 batters in a team-high 32.1 innings in 2019.

In the outfield, Meg Albery was ready for an expanded role in her fourth year with the softball program and Cami Liprini was quickly improving in her first year with the team after previously being a standout for the Mustangs’ soccer and track programs.

“Collectively this group played an integral part in our Howard County Championship run in 2018 and has helped shaped our softball culture at the Ridge,” Marriotts Ridge coach Renard Parson said. “Their hard work, dedication and willingness to put their team before themselves have truly made them one of the best group of seniors that I have ever had the privilege to coach. They all will be greatly missed.”

Mt. Hebron's Bri Hoskinson winds up to pitch against Reservoir Monday afternoon.
Mt. Hebron's Bri Hoskinson winds up to pitch against Reservoir Monday afternoon. (Nicole Munchel / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Mt. Hebron had three seniors and one graduating junior on its team this spring.

Bri Hoskinson was a four-year starter at pitcher, boasting improved velocity and two new pitches this spring to go along with a strong bat that produced a .378 average — including five doubles — in 2019. Abigail Miller was a varsity player for three years, battling back from an injury last year to improve her glove and batting skills for this season. Audrey Hill was preparing for her second year on varsity, while Abigail Ruby is a graduating junior that showed promise during the preseason as a first-year varsity contributor.

Reservoir right fielder Macayla Allen tracks a fly ball to her glove. Reservoir comes back to take a 6-5 win over Howard Wednesday afternoon in Ellicott City.
Reservoir right fielder Macayla Allen tracks a fly ball to her glove. Reservoir comes back to take a 6-5 win over Howard Wednesday afternoon in Ellicott City. (Doug Kapustin / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

The lone senior for Reservoir was Macayla Allen, who was a four-year varsity starter in the outfield for the Gators. She hit for a .400 batting average as a sophomore and then posted a .326 average last spring and scored nine runs.

“Her greatest qualities include her commitment to the team and passion for the game,” Reservoir coach Julie Frisvold said. “Macayla is an absolute asset on the team, helping in the development of younger players and pushing everyone to be their best.”

River Hill relief pitcher Quinn Kindbom delivers to Hammond in the first inning of a high school softball game.
River Hill relief pitcher Quinn Kindbom delivers to Hammond in the first inning of a high school softball game. (Steve Ruark / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

River Hill also had only one senior this spring, with four-year varsity starter Quinn Kindbom set to be a leader as a first baseman and pitcher. A former All-County performer, Kindbom is headed to play field hockey in college at the University of Delaware.

“Quinn has been a huge part of our team with her solid play and hard work on the field and we will miss her a lot next year,” River Hill coach Marni Rosenbaum said.

Wilde Lake's Rachel Van Osdel hits the bag as Atholton first baseman Juliette Nierle stretches for the throw. Wilde Lake takes a 12-3 win over visiting Atholton, Tuesday afternoon in Columbia.
Wilde Lake's Rachel Van Osdel hits the bag as Atholton first baseman Juliette Nierle stretches for the throw. Wilde Lake takes a 12-3 win over visiting Atholton, Tuesday afternoon in Columbia. (Doug Kapustin / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Both seniors for Wilde Lake — Rachel Van Osdel and Lily Richards — were slated to be starters in key roles this spring.

Van Osdel is a four-year starter at first base and two-year captain who hit for a .347 average with nine runs scored and eight RBI in 2019. Richards is a soccer standout who quickly developed into the Wildecats’ starting centerfielder, batting .304 with three doubles as a junior.

“While we only had two seniors, Rachel and Lily are such a dynamic duo, who have made a lasting impression on the Wildecat softball program,” Wilde Lake coach Tee Dronenburg said. “They are the kinds of athletes who coaches want to work with and who teammates want to play with. They are both positive, outgoing, easy to get along with, and fun. They were the perfect two to lead our young group of Wildecats — that included six freshmen — this season. Oh, and they are also incredibly talented softball players who were sound on defense and both hit over .300 last season. I know they were saving their best for last, but I can’t wait to see how bright they’ll shine in their next chapter.”

Recommended on Baltimore Sun

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement