State champion Raiders strike out on playing games in March
GLEN ELLYN - As both a player and coach, Julie Fonda has experienced her share of terrible spring weather.
But the Glenbard South softball coach has never seen anything like this.
For the first time she can remember, the Raiders didn’t play a single game in March and after Monday’s matchup with Geneva was postponed, the running total was seven cancellations.
“This is the worst it has ever been,” Fonda said. “I’ve never not played a game prior to break.”
The defending Class 3A state champions did at least get to practice on their field Monday for the first time as a full squad.
“It was good,” the coach said. “As far as outdoor practices, they’ve mostly been on turf (football field). Having a fence behind the outfield changes the perspective. They looked good.
“We have a ton of softball talent but we need to see them get tested.”
The 2013 season was expected to finally begin on Tuesday against Naperville North, which is the beginning to a busy stretch for the Raiders. Non-conference matchups against West Chicago, Wheaton North, Montini and Wheaton Warrenville South follow the rest of the week.
“We are going to see a mish-mosh of different abilities and teams,” Fonda said. “That’s good too. You want to go up against good competition.
“I think it’s a good thing (playing all of these games). Obviously they are tired of practicing and we need to see the things we need to improve on. The only way to do that is to go up against competition and see where you are at.”
Glenbard South will start Metro Suburban Conference play on Tuesday against Riverside Brookfield.
“It’s been that way for the past few years where we open up with RB,” Fonda said. “They are a good team and they have really good players. It is an early test.”
Heading into Tuesday’s non-conference matchup with Naperville Central, the Hilltoppers were 1-1 on the spring.
Coming off an season-opening, 9-2 win over Addison Trail, Glenbard West dropped a 13-2 decision to Willowbrook on March 26.
The story in the loss was the Hilltoppers’ defense, which made six errors leading to nine unearned runs. Sarah Park and Jacklyn Tyburk each had doubles.
Glenbard West returns to action on Thursday with a home matchup against West Chicago before heading to the Providence Catholic Invite on Friday and Saturday. The squad will open up that event against Lockport.