Softball Preview

Broadneck, Severna Park, Spalding Should Have Successful Seasons


Championship softball teams always attribute “being strong up the middle” to being competitive in every game and achieving winning seasons.

Being strong up the middle translates into having a strong catcher with the ability to throw out baserunners, a powerful pitcher, a slick-fielding shortstop and second baseman, and a speedy center fielder.

Broadneck, Severna Park and Archbishop Spalding high school teams have these qualities, which they hope will lead them to a deep run in their respective postseason tournaments.


The Bruins lost in the 4A state semifinals last year, but first-year head softball coach Stephanie Millard is excited to get back to the state playoffs this year.

“We have the bulk of our players coming back this year plus a really good incoming freshman class as well,” Millard said.

The Bruins will be led by seniors Hailey Adamson, Mara Gilkey and Samantha Waters, but Millard was exuberant about having 36 players try out and 17 players return from last year’s varsity and junior varsity teams.

“We have the core of the team back and we only lost one starter,” Millard said. “Plus, the returning players didn’t like losing that last game against Dulaney in the state semifinals, so they are driven to go farther this year.”

Millard was the coach of Broadneck’s junior varsity team for the last two years and those teams lost only one game in each of those seasons.

The Bruins will battle a tough county schedule but now are in a new region (4A East Region II) and will probably face perennial powerhouse Leonardtown in the regionals.

“Leonardtown is probably our obstacle for our run for the state title,” Millard said.

The Bruins also face Dulaney during the regular season.

“That game is already starred on the calendar,” Millard said.

Severna Park

The Falcons had a 9-9 record last year, but softball head coach Bailey Benedick’s goal is to bring Severna Park back to the glory days of when she played for the Falcons.

“I graduated from Severna Park in 2015 and played under Meredith McAlister,” Benedick said. “We’re trying to rebuild Severna Park to consistently compete for county and regional championships.”

To aid in those goals, Benedick has added two former teammates to restore the Falcons’ past success. Robin Buxton is Benedick’s assistant coach and Hailey Shipley is the junior varsity coach.

Benedick has eight returning players including pitcher Christina Ballagh, catcher Sally Trent and center fielder Addison Bianco.

“Trent has committed to play at the College of Charleston and Bianco had the highest batting average on the team last year and is a great defensive outfielder with her speed,” Benedick said.

The future is bright at the Robinson Road school as the Falcons also have a huge freshman class coming in this year.

Benedick expects the powerful teams in the county this year to be Broadneck, Crofton and Northeast. The coach also looks forward to playing in the Glen Burnie High School Easter tournament against Calvert, Spalding and Queen Anne’s high schools.

Archbishop Spalding

The Cavaliers won the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland (IAAM) A Conference title last year and finished with an 11-2 record.

Unbelievably, the Cavaliers are returning their entire team.

“We have so much talent and one of our strengths is having so many players who can play multiple positions,” said head softball coach Delaney Bell, who is also a 2008 graduate of Spalding.

Led by an outstanding battery of All-Conference pitcher Makenna Dean and catcher Danielle Kallas, as well as shortstop Jayda Betts, the Cavaliers used stellar pitching and defense to win their fourth consecutive league championship last spring.

However, according to Bell, it was Spalding’s high-powered offense that catapulted them through the final stretch of the season and league tournament.

“They really attacked the ball,” Bell said. “They all wanted to hit. It’s a really fun team to coach.”

Spalding should be ranked in the top five softball teams to begin this year, and if the Cavaliers win the crown, it would be the fifth consecutive championship for the Severn school.


No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here