Wilde Lake catcher Faith Leslie is a three-year starter for the Wildecats and is the team's top returning hitter.
Wilde Lake catcher Faith Leslie is a three-year starter for the Wildecats and is the team's top returning hitter. (Photo courtesy of Israel Carunungan)

2015 record: 0-17 county, 0-18 overall

Coach: Tee Dronenburg

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Key players: Senior Avery Haigh (OF); juniors Faith Leslie (C/IF) and Sydney McNamara (OF).

What you need to know: While the Wildecats did not win a game a season ago, there is some optimism heading into this year with a very young group that is eager to improve. Only three players return — Avery Haigh, Faith Leslie and Sydney McNamara — but they are all talented and capable of leading a roster that features a combined eight sophomores or freshmen.

"We have 12 new girls on our team … we are very young," coach Tee Dronenburg said. "However, our sophomore class played together on JV last season and many played together in HCYP leagues for years before that. So, in spite of being young, they know each other. We have a strong nucleus of girls who I am excited to see bond and grow together over the next few seasons."

Leslie is in her third year as a varsity starter and Dronenburg believes she is ready to break out. Last year she finished with a .351 batting average, 12 runs scored and 10 RBI.

McNamara is a third-year varsity starter as well and brings with her a winning mentality after helping the Wilde Lake girls soccer team to county and region championships last fall. She has spent time at pitcher, but she will mainly hold down a spot in the outfield.

Haigh is another outfielder who has really put in a lot of time and is much improved according to Dronenburg.

"I'm looking forward to seeing how our hitters do,' Dronenburg said. "Many of our girls worked hard in the batting cages this off-season and I'm hopeful that it will bring positive results."

Of the newcomers, freshman pitcher Kasey Baird is particularly intriguing. She has pitched for several years according to Dronenburg and has shown great command of the strike zone in practice.

Wilde Lake and Oakland Mills typically hook up for very competitive games each season, although the two squads will meet only once this spring — on April 18 at Oakland Mills.

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