1. The weather has been crummy. How crummy? “We lost 11 games and haven’t been able to make them all up,” coach Brian Holman said of Newark, which is 12-6 entering the final week of the regular season. “All our nonconference games are against 2A and 3A schools and it helps us get ready. We don’t have a lot of ‘softball players,’ but good athletes who are competitive and get better the more games they play.”
2. Youth is being served. While Little Ten Conference leader Somonauk relies on three freshmen and two sophomores, second-place Newark has “12 girls with only two seniors and two juniors. It’s not like we’re the oldest group,” said Holman, whose infield defense features a freshman at first base and sophomores at shortstop and catcher.
3. Movin’ up? First-year Sandwich coach Amber Nyalka has the Indians (7-15, 4-9) thinking they are on the verge of turning things around in the Interstate Eight. Junior catcher/DP Courtney Morgan leads at .391 and freshman pitcher Gabi Lopresti has made big strides. She’s 3-6, but has allowed only nine earned runs and has struck out 56 batters in 60 innings.