Looking for Work Ethic to Overcome Inexperience, Hun Softball Fired Up for Return to the Diamond
PLAYING TAG: Hun School softball catcher Hanna Babuschak makes a tag in a 2019 game. Senior star Babuschak is looking to enjoy a big final campaign for the Raiders. Hun was slated to start its 2021 season by hosting the Peddie School on April 6 and Springside Chestnut Hill (Pa.) on April 7 before playing at Blair Academy on April 10 and Conwell-Egan Catholic High (Pa.) on April 12. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)
By Bill Alden
Year in, year out, the Hun School softball team looks forward to its spring trip to balmy Florida to help get it sharp for the upcoming season.
But with COVID-19 concerns preventing any jaunt to Florida this spring, Hun had to battle some wintry weather in getting ready for the 2021 campaign as it got back on the field after the 2020 season was canceled due to the pandemic.
“We had our preseason on the turf because our field was completely covered with snow,” said Hun head coach Kathy Quirk, whose team was slated to open its season by hosting the Peddie School on April 6 and Springside Chestnut Hill (Pa.) on April 7 before playing at Blair Academy on April 10 and Conwell-Egan Catholic High (Pa.) on April 12.
“It wasn’t as good as going away to Florida, but they are excited. We have been working hard.”
Quirk is expecting to get some good work in the circle from a pair of freshman hurlers Jamie Staub and Lexi Kobryn.
“Jamie is a lefty, we have never had a lefty pitcher before so I am really excited to have her on the mound,” said Quirk.
“Lexi’s presence on the mound is outstanding, she is tall. Both of them throw very hard. I am very impressed with their work ethic. They are just nice kids, there is something really special about them. They have really joined into the team.”
Staub and Kobryn should also help spark the Hun hitting attack.
“Both Jamie and Lexi are very strong hitters,” said Quirk.
“I am hoping Hanna Babuschak steps up. Sammy Kandel has a nice bat. Kat Xiong has been doing a great job. I think we can score. We will definitely miss Gigi Venizelos and Abby Zucatti in our lineup. I am hoping that some of them will step up and try to fill that hole.”
Senior Babuschak should have a strong impact on the Hun defense.
“Hanna has been our starting catcher since she has been a freshman,” noted Quirk.
“She knows program and she knows what pitches to call. She has been working well with the pitchers.”
Across the diamond, junior Kandel, junior Ashley Jones, junior Katie Angelini, junior Christina Riviello, and junior Nora Shea are in the mix in the infield. The outfield will feature junior Xiong, junior Lexi Murdock, senior Kayla Hampton, junior Amelia Zucatti, sophomore Nina Amodio, and freshman Francesca Somers.
Noting that losing the 2020 season means that her squad lacks experience, Quirk wants her players to trust in their abilities.
“We have to believe in ourselves, we have to believe in each other,” asserted Quirk.
“Whoever is on the field has to have confidence and believe that they are out there because they can do it.”