Freeport continues to grind


The Freeport softball program is fighting through the growing pains of a demanding schedule in its third year competing in Conference V. 

The Red Devils (0-5) are welcoming the stepped up competition despite not getting rewarded with the wins thus far this spring coming off a winless 2023 season. Freeport first made the jump into a higher league for the 2022 campaign after reaching the playoffs in 2021 with a 12 wins in Conference VI.

“We're embracing it,” said seventh-year coach Rich Genzone. ”Every practice and every game is a chance to do better and to work on the things that we need to do to be more competitive while still having fun.”

Genzone graduated much of last year's starting lineup, but returns two members of his pitching staff in sophomore Gabriella Nurse and junior Isabella Ramirez. Freshman Brooklyn Mackenzie adds another arm to the roster and she threw a few games for JV in early April to gain some experience. 

Nurse has also emerged as an offensive leader early on this season in addition to her versatility to play multiple positions in the field. 

“She has a solid bat with a consistent swing and drives the ball to all parts of the field,” Genzone said of Nurse. “She is a very smart player.”

Senior Jaelyn Rosales leads the pitching staff as starting catcher. She is also a soft spoken leader of the team as a co-captain.

Versatile senior Allison Caceres captains the team with Rosales and is a key part of the middle infield at shortstop after starting at second base last season. 

“She is a great leader,” said Genzone of Caceres. “She's reliable anywhere you put her and the girls look up to her.”

Senior third baseman Roselyn Cabrera is another weapon in the lineup with some power at the plate. Cabrera can play multiple positions if needed, but has solidified the left side of the infield so far this season.

“She is really solid at third on that corner,” said Genzone of Cabrera. “She’s like a vacuum there and takes up everything.”

Freeport travels to Lawrence next before visiting Baldwin on Monday at 4:30 p.m.  The next home game is slated for April 27 against Oyster Bay at 10 a.m. 

The closest Freeport has come to reaching the win column so far this season was a 13-8 loss to Cold Spring Harbor on March 25, but Genzone is encouraged by the positive attitude his team has  been displaying amid the adversity. 

“They don't quit and they don't give up on themselves and to me that is a recipe for getting better and I do think that we can grab a win soon as we just have to keep consistent for a little bit longer in the games,” Genzone said  “We're definitely pushing and you can see we we are getting better and it is about translating it from the practice to the game seven innings.”