Cold weather has pushed back the start of Trinity's softball season, but when the field thaws the Blazers will be ready to wash away last season's troubles.
Last season had its share of disappointments with some key injuries, but this year Trinity is healthy and one year older in varsity level experience. Second year head coach Bob Osborne is confident that the team will improve on last year's dismal record of 7-20.
"We hope to flip that over this year," said Osborne. "We were injured and sick all last year. Right now, knock on wood, we're healthy."
Last year's line-up included many sophomores and freshmen who return along with some new players. The team has good gloves in the trio of juniors: centerfielder Marissa Bertoli, catcher Christina Carbonara and third baseman Kelly O'Brien. Both O'Brien and Carbonara were all-conference last year.
Second base and right field is a toss-up right now between Gina Consiglio, who had top bats last year with a .320 average, and Marissa Felder. Both went 15 out of 16 in stolen bases last season.
Playing at first, senior Sarah Nokes is the only lefty in the starting line-up. Sophomore Franki LeDeux rounds out the infield at shortstop. Senior Laura Gerambia is the left fielder and lead-off hitter.
Osborne talked about the team's pitchers, starting with junior Allie Hernandez.
"She's our No. 1 pitcher," he said of Hernandez, who had an ERA of 2.9 last year with 128 strikeouts in 129 innings. "We have three quality pitchers this year. We expect to be competitive in every game we play."
New additions to the pitching staff are senior Karen Wagner and OPRF transfer Rena Maritote.
The Blazers' main Girls Catholic Athletic Conference rivals are Guerin, Regina and St. Ignatius, who won the division last year.
"Fenwick is a big rival. They're not in our conference, but they were in our regional last year," said Osborne. Commenting on another neighboring threat, he said, "Oak Park is the team to beat. They have a great program. That's our goal to become a program like that.
"This team is hungry, I can tell. They can't wait for the first game to go out and prove to everybody that last year isn't going to happen again."
Trinity will play their home games at Triton College. They'll travel to OPRF on March 23 (4:30 p.m.) and host Fenwick on April 4 (4:30 p.m.).