“Give to the world the best you have, and the best will come back to you.”
The seven seniors on the softball team have done just that by giving their heart and soul to the squad, spending countless hours in the weight room or on the diamond, working, improving and becoming the leaders of the best softball team in the Ivy League.
Since their arrival on East Hill, the seniors have set records and broken records, won two Ivy League titles and traveled to the NCAA tournament. This weekend they look to raise the bar even farther. In a best of three series, the Red will be looking to defeat powerhouse Harvard for the automatic bid to return to the NCAA tournament.
Head coach Dick Blood could offer nothing but praise of his graduating class.
“I suppose a program could not be more blessed than to have a group of kids to follow up their commitment since they were freshmen,” commented Blood. “I just want to pay tribute to them. They are really a solid bunch; they have helped to maintain the tradition of hard work and commitment that our ladies of the past had set for them and they followed it nicely and hopefully they have been able to show that process to our younger players.”
Leading the seniors is captain Charlotte Brombach. Brombach recorded 19 RBIs and two home runs last year en-route to an All-Ivy selection.
Blood praised the outfielder stating, “She has been an exciting, engaging, get down and get dirty player.”
He continued, “[She is] really a wonderful leader for us, and she has had a brilliant career for us here, defensively and offensively. She has been the leader that we need.”
He finished by saying, “She’s maintained a tradition of hard work and commitment for our players. Charlotte is really special for this program.”
Of her teammates Brombach offered, “I definitely have very good friends [on the team]. The senior class is pretty awesome, I have learned so many things from those people.”
Third baseman Allison Batten returned to the lineup after taking a year off. An offensive threat, in her sophomore year she drove in a team-best 44 runs and leads Cornell in career home runs with 22.
Blood praised Batten stating, “Allison is of course a big bopper, at times lethal at the plate. She has a very calm demeanor during the ball game, and that is very important at this level.
“She’s been a good player for us.”
Of her years on the team, Batten commented that her favorite memories were beating Harvard sophomore and senior year. “They have always been an absolutely amazing team,” she stated. “[Beating them] shows how much heart and determination our team has.”
A staple on the mound for the Red these past four years has been Nicole Zitarelli. She moved into the number one pitching spot last year and earned herself a second-team All-Ivy selection. Entering this season, she was the second winningest pitcher in Cornell’s record book.
Blood acknowledged the talent of his pitcher. “Nicky has had a fabulous career for us. She had a brilliant year as a sophomore and another one this year. She is very modest, very humble [and a] very nice young lady