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Sports

Hinsdale Central softball young but talented

Hinsdale Central's Courtney Berlin delivers a pitch in a game last season. Berlin is back in the circle for the Red Devils this season.
Hinsdale Central's Courtney Berlin delivers a pitch in a game last season. Berlin is back in the circle for the Red Devils this season.

HINSDALE – For the second straight year, the Red Devils are on the young side as head coach Lee Maciejewski has 12 underclassmen – six sophomores and six juniors – with him on the roster. Last season there was eight underclassmen on the team. In both cases, that was done by design.

“I really like the makeup of our team,” Maciejewski said. “We have a lot of young talent, but what I like about our team is that the four girls who are upperclassmen have been varsity every year they’ve played softball.

“I really like having four-year [varsity] players in the program because they really assume the role of leaders for the younger girls in the program. They help them and are a good resource for them.”

Lauren Daleen is back for her fourth variety campaign and Emma Day, Faith Koffron and Annemarie Tracey are entering their third season as varsity starters.

Alysa Doneske, Lauren Excell, Haley O’Connell and Emily Park are sophomores who were varsity players last spring, but Maciejewski said that, aside from the upperclassmen and sophomore pitcher Courtney Berlin, positions are up for grabs.

“We still have a pretty healthy competition with our players for playing time,” the coach said.

Contending in the West Suburban Silver conference will be a challenge against defending four-time defending WSS champ Downers Grove North, 2013 state fourth place finisher York, and an always-competitive Glenbard West squad. Despite the overall youth of the squad, Maciejewski believes a couple of factors will help the Red Devils contend this spring.

“A lot of the sophomores with us this year were with us last year, so they have a year under their belts and have learned the speed of the game,” he said. “And what I like about this team is they bought into the weight training in the offseason. A lot of our girls, you can see they improved their strength and quickness.”

Hinsdale Central Red Devils

Coach: Lee Maciejewski

2013 record: 14-18

Top players:

Courtney Berlin so. P

Lauren Daleen sr. 3B

Emma Day jr. RF/CF

Faith Koffron jr. C

Annemarie Tracey jr. CF/P

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