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Softball team strikes out the competition

Senior+Sarah+Meyerl+and+junior+Meghan+Sheehan+run+toward+each+other+to+celebrate+their+win+in+the+IAAM+A+conference+championships.+JC+beat+Mount+de+Sales+7-2+on+May+16+at+HCC.+
Senior Sarah Meyerl and junior Meghan Sheehan run toward each other to celebrate their win in the IAAM A conference championships. JC beat Mount de Sales 7-2 on May 16 at HCC.

Senior Sarah Meyerl and junior Meghan Sheehan run toward each other to celebrate their win in the IAAM A conference championships. JC beat Mount de Sales 7-2 on May 16 at HCC.

Photo Courtesy Sarah Meyerl

Photo Courtesy Sarah Meyerl

Senior Sarah Meyerl and junior Meghan Sheehan run toward each other to celebrate their win in the IAAM A conference championships. JC beat Mount de Sales 7-2 on May 16 at HCC.

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From her seat on the dugout bench, junior right-fielder Erin Disney leans forward. She watches as sophomore pitcher Emma Kropkowski winds up and releases the ball. It flies through the air, and her opponent makes contact. The softball team pulls together to field the ground ball, and with the play, they win their first IAAM A conference championship since 1999.

When Kropkowski threw the last pitch of the game, sealing a 7-2 win against Mount de Sales Academy, the rest of the team quickly celebrated by piling on top of her. “[Kropkowski] threw the last pitch, and the opposing team hit it, and we got the out. In that moment, we all froze and then ran,” Disney said. “Our coach was on the ground, and everyone was smiling.”

The championship game took place on May 16 at Harford Community College. According to junior team captain and shortstop Meghan Sheehan, the game was tough in the beginning, but throughout it, the team pulled together in a strong display of athleticism. “It started off a little bit slow in the first two innings, but once we got momentum, there was really no stopping us,” Sheehan said.

The softball team finished with a 10-7 record during the regular season, including a 5-5 record against in-conference teams. The team looked poised to make a championship run early in the season after winning their first six games.

Disney attributes the team’s success to the strong relationship they built and maintained throughout the season. “I think our bond as a team is what led us to victory. There was no drama this year,” Disney said. “We all really kept each other going, and we were all there for each other no matter what.”

According to Disney, each team member was given a gift at the beginning of the year that constantly reminded them of their bond . “At the beginning of the season, our coach got our entire team bracelets that said ‘Got Your Back,’ and we really based our season on picking each other up,” she said.

In addition, Disney believes that their three coaches, Sherry Hudson, Cierra Mizurak, and Michelle Waugh, were instrumental to producing a winning team. “They made us work hard and play even harder. We had to literally go hard or go home every time we stepped on the field,” Disney said.

While the victory is still fresh in the team’s mind, some players are already looking forward to next year’s season in hopes that they can repeat their success. “I think it will be tough without our seniors, but I think we will be able to do well with the freshmen coming in and the returning players,” Kropkowski said.

Paige Alban and Ianna Pirozzi are In-Focus Editors for The Patriot and jcpatriot.com.

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Softball team strikes out the competition