Softball players support each other, improve skills


courtesy of Pixabay

Softball players look forward to enjoying their entire season this year.

Lizzie Stone, Staff Writer

High school softball teams are the culmination of an athlete’s time in the sport. Many athletes play on softball teams throughout their childhoods, building up years of practice as they advance.

“I have been playing softball since I was 7 years old, but started playing tee ball when I was 4, so I was introduced to baseball and softball very early,” junior Katelyn Gallaher said.

If they don’t move on to play in college, high school is the last opportunity for many athletes to accomplish what they want in their sport. This year, players are happy to get back into it.

“My team is like my second family,” sophomore Tara Sankner said. “I’ve been playing for nine years and I love softball. The only thing that changed this year is COVID-19 rules.”

During practice, players stretch and do throwing warmups, then rotate through hitting drills. They also practice catching low balls, a skill that is valuable for games. Softball practices and games keep players spread out. Masks are mandatory for the team while on the field.

“There are two very different sides of the game,” Gallaher said. “It’s a very team oriented game but individually we must all perform to win.”

This year is an opportunity for players to reach their individual goals. Some softball players have specific stats or milestones they want to reach, while others want to round out their skills. Gallaher hopes to improve her batting average and have fun with her teammates. Overall, the team hopes to grow closer and have a successful season.

“I’m surprised that it hasn’t been any harder to stay positive,” Sankner said. “I’m really glad I got to play.”