LM softball has made great strides this season under key leadership. This season, softball has looked for leadership from its only senior captain, Jessie Epstein. After the graduation of star captain Mo McConnell, LM class of 2016, Epstein has been rallying her players to make her last season count. Most of these players are underclassmen filling in the gaps left behind by some great former talent.
The LM softball team has been “team together” since Epstein started playing her freshman year. In her final season, Epstein has seen ups and downs, though she recalls a very positive experience throughout her entire career.
“While LM softball’s record doesn’t really show it, our team has improved immensely over the past four years that I have been here,” says Epstein.
After not obtaining a single win the past season, LM softball has won three games so far this season. In fact, on May 16, the team beat Central League rival Conestoga. On May 18, the team beat Academy Park at home by ten runs. This positive momentum is a good sign for the rest of the season and for future seasons since Conestoga is a top-tier team in the always competitive Central League. The LM softball team hasn’t beaten them in over seven years.
“I can’t say our record is great, but our season has gone relatively well because the team is learning how to build off each other, work together, and play because we love the game.”
This season, Epstein had a stellar year at shortstop, controlling the infield for many error-free games. The team goal this season was to eliminate as many errors as possible while staying smart at bat. Beyond Epstein, there’s only one junior and thirteen freshmen and sophomores.
“While our team is so young, there is actually immense potential,” says Epstein. Sophomore pitcher Hannah Charleson and sophomore right fielder Zoe Kaplan have been big contributors on the diamond. At bat, freshmen Kylie Pacchione and Alyssa Holmberg are crucial for the team’s run scoring.
“Everyone is continuing to grow, and I can bet that by the time all of these girls are upperclassmen, the team will be one to reckon with,” states Epstein.
Moreover, Epstein sees that the future of her program is in good hands with its veteran coach Jim LaPera and assistant coach Mike Culbert. Speaking about her coaches, Epstein says only positive things, “our coaches rock. They are extremely supportive and dedicated to our team.” She elaborates, “though our coaches are patient with us, they also know when to buckle down and tell us to get our heads in the game.”
LM softball for Epstein is more than just a sport in which she participates. It’s about the individuals who make the team such a positive experience. “Working together, having a bond, and improving as much as we can,” are some words that best describe Epstein’s softball squad. “Softball teaches us that having a good team isn’t all about winning,” explains Epstein. With this attitude, Epstein and LM softball hope to enjoy the last few games of the regular season while playing their hardest so they can finish this season satisfied.