Walpole’s Sharlotte Stazinski controls first A Shot for Life softball throwing challenge – Boston Herald
READING – Sharlotte Stazinski dominates the game of the first.
After a stellar freshman season from the Walpole Circle last spring, the young pitcher soared in the first A Shot For Life softball pitcher’s challenge by winning the crown Sunday afternoon at Austin Prep. Stazinski finished in the top three in each of the three mini-games that made up the challenge, which was yet another extension of the ASFL in its great efforts to build community and raise funds for cancer research.
This included a first-place finish in the nine-hole minigame from the get-go, setting the tone for the other 11 pitchers participating en route to a first-place six-point finish. Taunton’s Samantha Lincoln came second with seven runs, likely anticipating another close finish to follow in the ASFL Softball Home Run Derby later in the day.
In addition to Saturday’s baseball challenges, the group helped fundraise over $80,000.
“It feels good,” said Stazinski, who wasn’t expecting a performance as good as her. “I really wanted to be a part of that. He raises funds for cancer, it’s a very good cause. … I’m really grateful to be able to help other people by raising funds for them.
The first of its kind in softball within the ASFL, pitchers were tested on how well they could work the corners of the strike zone in the 9-hole mini-game, their strength in the long mini-game of throwing type range finder, and had some fun throwing pins in a mini bowling game. Ranked pitchers finished each contest with a point value and the lowest aggregate score was won.
Stazinski and Lincoln battled closely in all three contests, with Stazinski’s 30 points over the three nine-hole rounds edging out Morgan Barmash (Woburn)’s 27 points and Lincoln’s 25. They finished tied for third in the range yard behind a sudden death between winner Abby Bettencourt (Peabody) and Riley Quirk (Wachusett), all before Lincoln won the bowling challenge with 67, ahead of Stazinski’s 44 for second. square.
Methuen’s Ilene Rickard also impressed with a competition-best 13-point round over nine holes, and Alyx Rossi (Austin Prep) was consistent throughout to take third overall.
After a few years of organizing the home run derby, ASFL founder and CEO Mike Slonina was happy to finally launch this competition for softball.
“We took the best home hitters from before, but we were so missing great players, great people,” he said. “We just didn’t have a home for them because they’re not home runs. So we wanted to create another avenue.
Outside of the competition itself, Slonina was once again pleased with how another new layer of ASFL came together. Not only since finishing raising nearly $100,000, but also bringing in 12 new players and integrating them into the ASFL family, as well as advancing the brand through fundraising and sponsorship more involved.
“It was the evolution of our ASFL baseball and softball department, it was happening,” he said. “The brand has taken a big step this year. … We’re inventing the wheel, teaching (players) for the first time how to do all of this, and they’re also getting to know us. There was a bit of a warm-up period for the first 20 minutes, but then they loosened up.