Softball team exceeds expectations



The softball team showcased their talents many times throughout the season thus far and are showing signs of improvement. After their 2-12 season last year, an all new coaching staff and a team consisting of several new players, many did not know what to expect out of the Bulldogs this season. However, all expectations were beyond met. The softball team has stepped up to the plate this season with outstanding team and individual performances.

 With a small and interconnected team such as Freedom, one small change disrupts the entire dynamic. With three injuries to start the season, the Bulldogs had several issues to work through. After  junior Shaye Bailey and sophomores Annabelle Komlos and Haydan Baucan were injured, the small team became even smaller. Shortly after returning to the field due to a collarbone injury, Bailey hit an inside the park homerun, helping lead the Bulldogs to an 18-0 victory over the Aliquippa Quips on Friday, April 14. With Baucan also recovering and returning, the team had an influx in options allowing them to elevate their performance to the next level. Not all games, however, have gone entirely according to plan for the Bulldogs.

 After beating the Quips, they fell to both Shenango and Riverside at their following home games on April 17 and April 19. Despite these losses, the team has shown great improvement throughout the season both in performance on the field and in relationships amongst the team members. After banding together enough girls to play, the softball team and the new coaching staff formed a family. No matter the score of a game, winning or losing, constant cheers can be heard from the Freedom dugout. Positive affirmations, nicknames and jersey numbers are called out with each swing of the bat. Even after a strikeout, players are met by supporting teammates that never fail to look on the bright side. The steady progress of the Bulldogs has definitely caught the attention of its supporters, and even taken some of the players by surprise as well. 

“Though you need offense and defense to win, we have a really strong defense,” sophomore Isabell Bonzo said. “Every position has its strengths and time when it’s needed on the field, so everyone is equally important.”

Regardless of certain ups and downs of the season, the girls can look at the immense amount of progress that they have made. With this being said, the season is still not over, as anything ahead of them is possible. The great teamwork, effort and leadership displayed by the Bulldogs on the field gives hints to what they could possibly accomplish in the future. Whether on the field or off, the girls are sure to find success.