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Photo by Jim Dolan
Photo by Jim Dolan
It’s a call for “all hands in” inside the Fontbonne huddle as the Varsity’s three surging sophomores, Maddie Schalk (left), Alexa Bertelle (center with glove) and catcher Sydney Lacognata carried the Bonnies through Easter break.

With league games suspended during the GCHSAA’s Easter break, the Fontbonne Varsity softball team played a host of non-league games to keep their competitive edge.

With a 7-3 loss to Construction and Engineering of Queens and a 12-0 loss to Moore Catholic of Staten Island, the Bonnies finally ended a two-game skid with a 6-6 tie to Port Richmond that was called early for safety concerns.

The Bonnies then got back in the winning column with two consecutive wins – first, a 12-1 win over St. John Villa of Staten Island and then, a 9-1 win over Poly Prep.

Evaluating his team at the mid-season point Fontbonne Coach Frank Marinello sees this year’s Varsity driven by three surging sophomores. In particular, Marinello has singled out the play of second baseman and leadoff hitter Alexa Bertelle who has become a sophomore standout for the team.

“She simply puts the team on her back with her defense and hitting,” said Marinello of his second year Varsity player. “Alexa plays a solid second base and is the team’s leading hitter. In her most recent game against Poly Prep, she managed to hit two long doubles.”

Another of the team’s surging sophomores is catcher Sydney LaCognata, another second year Varsity player of whom Marinello states, “It’s hard to find a better receiver than Syd.”

Following in the footsteps of her current teammate and senior sister Natalie, who made the All Brooklyn Team last season, Sydney is simply a “gritty player” who is very talented at receiving and blocking the ball, according to Marinello.

Getting more recent playing time at third base, second year Varsity sophomore Maddie Schalk blossomed over the Easter break, making constant contact with the ball and defending the “hot corner.” Although she does not have a high number of “at-bats,” Schalk is currently challenging Alexa Bertelle in the percentage category as one of the team’s leading hitters.

After compiling a 2-2-1 record of non-league games over the Easter Bbreak, the Varsity Bonnies remain with a 3-3 league record when they resume GCHSAA play this week.  

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