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The Paw Print

The Paw Print

Athlete of the Future: Brynn Connolly

Melody Huang

Even if you know almost nothing about softball, you probably understand how important the role of catcher is, which is why it may come as a surprise that Poly’s dominating team has an underclassman in the position. Freshman Brynn Connolly has demonstrated her talent on the field and strong dedication to the team as she has aided the team in its 10-7 record.

Connolly, who began playing softball in kindergarten, has become both a talented catcher and team leader. Her position as catcher requires a high softball IQ and a strong ability to read the game. She makes decisions about the plays, requiring a solid understanding of the strategy, in addition to the athletic speed and agility crucial to the game.

Connolly’s skill isn’t restricted to catching, however. Sophomore third baseman Olivia Asper de Tyson described Connolly’s versatility and reliability as a batter as well. “Brynn is a key asset to the team. She is not only a skilled catcher but she is also often found starting off high on the lineup,” de Tyson said.

Connolly’s stats only confirm her skill: she leads the team in bases stolen — an impressive 21 across 17 games — and on base percentage, at 0.555. She maintains second place on the team in batting average, 0.449, and hits, at 22. Being a good player and teammate goes beyond just reading opponents.

Junior Lyla Pak, who plays second base, emphasized Connolly’s role as the emotional center of the team: “As a catcher, Brynn can always sense when we need to reset. She pulls us together and because of her, we’re able to quickly get out of rough innings.”

Outside of games, Connolly’s unshakeable focus and optimism continue to inspire her teammates and coaches. She has developed a strong work ethic and insatiable desire to improve, paired with a genuine care for those around her.

“Brynn is always offering to help and make sure practices are productive. She really cares about her teammates and works hard to contribute,” Pak said. “I know Brynn will always lift up her teammates and make sure everyone feels supported.”

With a deadly combination of strategy, a willingness to work hard and unfaltering optimism, it’s easy to see why Connolly has already emerged as a team leader.

“She’s already showing leadership qualities from her knowledge behind the plate to leading cheers in the dugout,” said assistant coach Alexandra Bryndzia. “Even though she’s a freshman, she’s already someone who is consistent and reliable – a coach’s dream.”

It’s clear the softball program has a lot to look forward to in the coming years as Connolly further develops her skills. Expectations will be high as she heads into her sophomore year, but her coaches and teammates are confident she will only supersede them.

“I expect big things in Brynn’s future. She is going to keep getting stronger, faster and better. She will be unstoppable on the bases and no one will be able to throw her out,” said head coach Jennifer Bond. “The other team will not have a clue what she is going to do next.”

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Katie Walsh, Staff Writer
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    Bonnie CarpenterMay 3, 2024 at 8:53 am

    how proud I am to read all these wonderful thing about my Great Granddaughter and know she has a great future in her schools sports. love to Brynn and all she does Great Grandma Bonnie