From the time she stepped onto the field at Severna Park as a freshman, Paige Briganti was a leader for the Falcons. Briganti, named the No. 3 Outfielder of the Decade by Varsity Sports Network, anchored centerfield for the Falcons and batted leadoff starting her sophomore year.
Briganti attributes the recognition to her offensive output, and the numbers back up that belief.
She finished with a career .569 hitting average, was a three-time first-team All-County selection and was named first-team All-Metro her senior year by the Baltimore Sun after driving in 25 runs and stealing 15 bases. However, Briganti believes that she was an even better defender than she was a hitter and that is also reflected in her stats; she didn’t commit a single fielding error her senior year.
Briganti credits her teammates from before high school with helping her develop into the player she became.
“I just learned very early on from teammates that were just incredible and that elevates you. Seeing how good kids your age can be, it pushes you,” she said. “I definitely got a very, very strong push from the girls that I played with and that really carried me for several years.”
And once she got to high school, she became that role model for many of her teammates. Claire Hanratty, who played both softball and basketball with Briganti, spoke about what she learned from having Briganti as a teammate.
“She is a naturally gifted athlete who always took softball and basketball very seriously,” Hanratty stated. “She showed up to practice and worked hard every time. She was dependable and a leader by example. Playing in the outfield with her all those years pushed me to be better because I wanted to work harder to match her skill and consistency.”
After high school, Briganti went to Washington College where she played in 157 out of 158 games, batted .322 for her career and finished with 165 hits, 70 runs batted in, twice led the team in sacrifice bunts and had a .945 fielding average while committing just 12 errors across all four seasons.
“The competition at the college level was just a lot more intense,” Briganti said. “With high school, you get into a great routine of balancing school and softball. Before high school, I hadn’t done a daily routine of class, then going right into practice and having that great time management. And that gets even more amplified in college, so I think the work ethic is the strongest aspect I got from high school.
“For the younger girl who is interested in softball, I would say go for it,” she added. “Try to find a team that will push you to be better. If you join a team where you’re already better than everyone around you, you’re not going to really improve as much as you would on a team where you’re surrounded by peers that you can learn a lot from. That is the best lesson that I’ve learned playing softball throughout my career. If you want to be the best, you have to play the best.”
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