Fresh faces rule the roost for WC slow-pitch|Prep softball

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Despite having just two seniors, Warren Central slow-pitch coach Lucy Young feels confident in her squad’s abilities going into this season.

Kyley Wells and Blair Thornton, who play in the outfield, are the club’s lone seniors and a big reason why Young feels good about her team.

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“They’ve shown some great leadership,” Young said. “Our younger players are watching and learning from them.”

Eleven of the team’s 20 players are ninth-graders or below and the competition in camp for spots in the starting lineup have been fierce.

“We only lost two seniors from last year,” Thornton said. “So we should be pretty good this year.”

The biggest adjustment for the roster is getting their timing back, since most of them spend the summer playing fast-pitch.

“We’re working fundamentals everyday,” Young said. “We work a lot on their batting, getting them to change a couple of little things so they can hit the slow pitch.”

Wells and Thornton are trying to help their young teammates adjust to the rigors and the speed of playing varsity ball, where their nerves tend to take hold.

“It’s pretty tough because most of them have just played city league,” Wells said. “But they’re getting better.”

Chelsea Worley is another returnee at second, while sophomore Krista Cortezie will play shortstop.

Hannah Krapac and Sydnei Smith, who can play numerous spots, will handle pitching.

The biggest battle in the early going is at catcher, where a couple of seventh-graders battle for the spot.

One key addition will be track star Audrianna Ratliff, whose natural skills and speed have impressed Young in the early going.

The key, said Young, will be molding a group of individuals into a cohesive unit.

“They’ve just got to gell together,” Young said. “The biggest thing is our hitting. Most of them have some playing experience.”


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