By: Amanda Dronzek
Kicking off spring sports, the East Greenwich girls softball team has officially gotten the ground running as they recently hit the field and began preparations for this year’s 2021 season. With their first game tentatively scheduled for May 7th, the team has come back stronger and more eager than ever to play. After the loss of last year’s season, all Avengers spring sports have been given the green light to play under COVID protocols. If all goes according to plan, the girls will play out what would be their full season in the span of one month, right on track for the end of the school year. The future’s looking bright for the Avengers, and with a handful of new faces joining last year’s line up, the coaches and players have confidence that 2021 will be a memorable season for all.
Due to the loss of the 2020 season, the freshman and current sophomores are both experiencing high school softball for the first time. As for the team in general, a year of development was taken from the program, which may have been the boost the girls needed. After almost two years of dormancy from the sport, the team has finally gotten the chance to interact with each other and get a sense of how the season will play out. Already, many players have shown their talents, and coaches Robert Petrucci and Karen Lockhart have high hopes for their new team. “We are really excited to be back at it this year with some fresh faces and some strong senior leaders. We are hoping to be in every game, competing for a chance to fight in the playoffs – and I think we have the tools to be able to do that.”
For six players, this 2021 season is also their last season. After being a part of the Avenger family for the past 3 years, they are all hoping to leave the field with a victorious season. “I am very happy to get an early start on the season, since we barely played last year,” captain Maggie O’Brien remarks. “I feel like this year we’ll be a more competitive team with a bunch of new talent joining us. I hope that as a team, we can improve together throughout the season, since we weren’t able to grow together last year.” For all of us, 2021 has become a year of growth and opportunity, as the world has slowly started to return to normalcy. With any luck the team can have a season resembling the 2019 environment, this time with a stronger group of girls and more energy surrounding the players.
“The general attitude and anticipation for the season to get underway is certainly exciting,” Lockhart says. “Since our season is starting a bit later than normal, the warm weather will be welcomed, and I think everyone is itching to be out on our field, practicing, and getting ready for our lineup of games.” Captain Amy Benson, another veteran from the Avengers softball team has also agreed this year’s season is full of opportunity for success. “I’m expecting to make it fun for the freshman and sophomore girls I have not had the opportunity to play with year and hopefully make new memories with them as well. I feel like this year we’ll definitely be more competitive considering the talent coming in. I’m hoping to play as much as I can, do the best I can, and have a lot of fun this year.” Both O’Brien and Benson have big hopes for the future ahead, with Maggie hoping to study hospitality and tourism in New York City, and Amy planning to study communication sciences and disorders at UNH.
2021 has started off for all as a year of opportunities. The EGHS girls softball program has worked relentlessly over the past couple years to build a strong team to represent the school, along with redoing the dugouts and benches with funding from past events. The slate has been wiped clean for the Avengers, and both the players and coaches have devoted their time and energy into setting up what seems to be a promising season.