Hornets softball team returns from spring training at Disney World
By Frances Taylor - Staff Writer
East Hartford - posted Fri., Apr. 27, 2012
For the first time, the East Hartford High School girls' varsity softball team spent spring break week doing spring training in a sports complex operated by Disney and ESPN. The Hornets spent three days playing softball games against other teams at the Disney Wide World of Sports complex and riding the rides at Disney World in the evening.
“We spent three days playing two games a day,'' said coach Ray Bell, who is in his first season of coaching the team. They have been fund-raising for the trip since last year. “It was the students that pushed – they knew about other teams that had gone there and they wanted to go there, too.'' About 16 varsity and two junior varsity players made the trip. “It was a great time,'' Bell said.
Since returning from Florida, the team is 6-3. “We only lost to the really good teams like Glastonbury and Rockville,'' he said. “We're a veteran group – everyone returned from last year, many of our players are honors students – they are a great group of kids.''
Erin Walsh, a senior, is in the fourth year with the team. “We've having a good year – we've had a few rough games – but other than that we are pretty solid this year,'' she said.
Megan Kennedy, a pitcher, is also in her fourth year with the team. The spring break trip “was really a fun time, I think it has helped us to play with more conviction,'' she said of the trip. Kennedy, who is graduating this year, will continue to play softball when she attends Albertus Magnus in the fall.
The Hornets team made it to the quarterfinals last year, which they hope to repeat this year. Cassie Quattropani, a catcher and junior, called the spring break trip a great bonding experience. “The season is going well for us so far. It’s still early, so we have plenty of time to get where we want to go,'' she said.