The Lawrence softball team wrapped up its season last weekend with a victory over Hempstead, putting with a fantastic final record of 13-5.
Unfortunately for the Golden Tornadoes, Long Island softball is extremely competitive with so many teams and 13 wins was not enough to make the cut for the playoffs from its conference, but that did not discourage this program.
Rookie coach Jessie Ford is proud of her team and said its showing a lot of promise for future success.
“The varsity team as a whole really has made their mark with a 13-5 record and they love it,” said Ford. “They have fun, they want to show up. I've never had attendance issues or anything like that. They show up to practice every day and are ready to work.”
Lawrence had a handful of players produce strong seasons. Third baseman Ariana Watson finished with six home runs and 33 RBI, catcher Jayleen Aquino was second in all of Long Island with eight home runs and added 28 RBI. Star pitcher Gabriela Guevara was a force on the mound, tallying 111 strikeouts in her senior season while starting center fielder and number two pitcher Brianna Vargas struck out 32 and drove in 21 runs. Starting shortstop Cynthia Saravia Reyes had 14 RBI and was a star in the field all spring.
“Defensively, [Saravia Reyes] was just completely and utterly unstoppable. She was an honorable mention All-County two years in a row,” said Ford. “She's been a leader in the program since she was in seventh grade and she was a true leader on and off the field. She is graduating along five other seniors, so six total and those are going to be big shoes to fill for next year.”
Some who can step up and fill those shoes left by the soon-to-graduate seniors are incumbent starters Aquino, Kamora Austin, Krissy Cribbs, and Lucy Torres.
“Our entire outfield core is graduating so Lucy's really going to be a leader and I'm confident if I keep her in the outfield, but I'm also extremely confident with putting her in the infield as well,” said Ford. “Next year, depending on the sophomores and freshmen that we bring up,I know that I can have Lucy just about anywhere and she's gonna succeed.”
Pitching will be an important spot to fill after Guevara’s departure and Ford will be looking at current JV pitchers Giana Torres and Frankie Cancelliere to step up and perform at the varsity level. No matter who takes the field for the Golden Tornadoes, the program appears to be in good hands.
“These girls that are seniors graduating, they're the reason why Lawrence softball has been doing so well the last few years. It’s because of their work ethic and striving to be the best players that they can be,” Ford said. “I think that they have set the tone appropriately for all the underclassmen that are following in their footsteps.”