* Denise Warren, Glen Burnie -- The most difficult part of explaining Warren's importance to the Gophers is knowing where to begin. On the mound, she won six of eight decisions, struck out 57 in 56 innings and allowed just six earned runs (0.75). Opponents batted .133 against her. In the last week of the regular season, she pitched 10 innings against Chesapeake, then came back with six more in a win over Severna Park, giving up just two earned runs. She allowed only three hits in a region semifinal loss to Northern, when the Gophers' sloppy play proved their undoing. Offensively, the numbers are just as impressive, especially in the highly competitive 4A League. Often batting leadoff, she hit .459 (28-for-61) with five doubles, two triples, one home run, 21 runs scored and nine RBIs. She also led the team with 17 steals. She had a .609 on-base percentage and a .607 slugging percentage. In the last week of the season, she went 9-for-15 with four doubles, one triple and two steals. "She does the five things you're supposed to do: she hits, hits for power, runs, throws and catches. There's not much else a softball player can do. And she did them all very well," said coach Bob Broccolino. Warren didn't pitch much as a freshman because of control problems, but she showed vast improvement as a sophomore and "had a breakthrough year as a junior," Broccolino said. "Her hitting this year was essential, too, because we didn't have many great ones. She was one of the great ones. And the range she showed at shortstop was incredible. She was invaluable to the team. Her competitiveness is probably what sets her apart from a lot of kids. She does not like to lose and she'll fight you tooth and nail."

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