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Sports

Softball: Back on the diamond, Calli Bishop one of an experienced group of Foxes

Haylee Reyes, Teaghen Amwoza leads a deep lineup that hit five homers in opening weekend

Yorkville batter Teaghen Amwoza rounds the bases with a big smile after hitting a home run against Kaneland during a girls varsity softball game at Yorkville High School on April 10, 2018.
Yorkville batter Teaghen Amwoza rounds the bases with a big smile after hitting a home run against Kaneland during a girls varsity softball game at Yorkville High School on April 10, 2018.

Calli Bishop doesn't care where she plays for Yorkville.

She's just excited to be back out there.

Bishop, a Foxes' senior, played outfield on varsity as a freshman, first base as a sophomore. But she broke her ankle on the first day of tryouts last spring. She missed the entire softball season.

Now healthy and coming off a full basketball season, Bishop is one of a seasoned group of Foxes that has Yorkville coach Jory Regnier excited about what's in store this spring.

"Defensively, Calli is just an athlete," Regnier said. "She is very much of an attitude that coach, put me wherever you want, which is great. It's tough being out junior year and then senior year, to find that eagerness, she is so excited to be back out there and is hungry. For her it's about getting reps in."

Bishop, who posted a .329 on-base percentage as a sophomore with a .984 fielding percentage, likely slides in around sixth to the Foxes' lineup and brings a big bat to the table as a nice addition. Yorkville scored 32 runs in going 2-1 in a season-opening trip to Jacksonville over the weekend, and hit five home runs.

"I think we had more home runs than we had all of last season," Regnier said. "Good things all around.

The Foxes, coming off a 12-17 season, have a slew of girls with significant varsity experience with six starters back.

Parkside recruit Dani Evans, who hit .368 last year, is in her fourth varsity season. Fellow senior Haylee Reyes, who hit .398 with a .959 fielding percentage as a junior, is in her third year. So is junior Teaghen Amwoza, a Winona State commit, who hit .368 last year and hit three homers over the weekend.

"Haylee led us last year offensively and is somebody that gets on base a lot, looking for her to be our leadoff and she's a great baserunner," Regnier said. "Teaghen has had a great start, looking for her to take a more vocal role controlling the infield. Dani I think is ready to finish her high school career on a positive note. We have a lot of girls with varsity experience; it's not just age."

Senior Alyssa Kukielka, signed with Calvin, hit .322 last year and is in her second varsity season, as is pitcher Lauren Howard (6-8, 2.48 earned run average) and junior Amber Dasenbrock (.304 average).

Howard will lead Yorkville on the mound, with three to four pitchers behind her.

"Her composure, and her competitive nature are things she really brings to the table," Regnier said. "She is unshaken in any scenarios. She brings a calmness when she's on the mound."

As a group, the Foxes are pushing the idea of being tenacious between the lines.

"I think they are figuring out what that means for each individual kid," Regnier said. "We want them to go after goals, set a high standard of expectations. It's been great so far."

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