Four New Berlin players earn spots on All-Suburban Team
Softball standouts played key roles for West, Ike
The softball coaches for New Berlin Eisenhower and West enjoyed an easy season.
That's not to suggest that Jeff Setz and Corey Scheel didn't do their respective jobs in leading the Lions (23-3) and Vikings (14-8) to successful springs, but they admittedly had plenty of help on the field.
Each of the players named to the NOW Newspapers 2010 All-Suburban Softball Team - three from Eisenhower and one from West - brought softball savvy to the field every day, their coaches said.
Seniors Tori Kilps, Megan Duerlinger and Ashleigh Sagat helped propel the Lions to a share of the Woodland Black Division title, while junior Martha Radtke won conference Player of the Year honors in the Blue Division and helped the Vikings secure a second-place finish there.
"I've had her since her freshman year and from day one, she knew she belonged here," said Scheel of Radtke. "She doesn't have a stop button on her."
A varsity player in three sports, Radtke is a true athlete, said Scheel, who also coached her on the basketball court.
In addition to playing a stellar second base, she took the mound against some of the toughest competitors during conference play, including South Milwaukee, Greenfield and Eisenhower.
"She is one of those girls who could play anywhere for us and offensively, people made errors because of her quickness and just putting the ball in play," Scheel said.
Radtke topped the team with a .428 average, scored 34 runs and also drew 21 walks at the top of the West lineup.
While Radtke blossomed as a leader this year, Scheel expects great things next year on a team that is losing only one senior.
"She has been an extension of a coach, and I'm glad she's going to be back helping us fight for a conference championship," he said.
Catcher keys Ike
Across town, the All-Suburban selections at Eisenhower concluded their high school careers with a division title, and each player showcased her own style of leadership.
Duerlinger, the only player of the three who was a member of the 2008 state championship team, was the vocal heart of the 2010 squad. The catcher hit .609 and led the team with four home runs. But it was her work behind the plate and ability to call a game that drew the praise of her coach.
"Being in the catching position, she kind of controlled the game and kept us together on defense," Setz said. "She was almost like having another coach on the field."
Duerlinger, who is headed to Cardinal Stritch, also established a rapport with Kilps, who hadn't thrown a pitch at the varsity level until this season.
Despite that fact, she went 16-1 with a 1.14 earned-run-average and struck out 148 hitters in just 98.2 innings. She will toe the rubber for Indiana Tech next year.
"She kind of came out of nowhere and she had to wait until her time," Setz said. "But when it finally came, she really excelled."
While Duerlinger led the Lions on the field, Kilps proved to be a leader off of it.
"Her style was to do a lot of preparation to the point where she was almost a perfectionist," Setz said. "On the field she was very focused, but she was also good at making the girls feel comfortable."
As for Sagat, she was comfortable in almost any role, as evidenced by her play in center field and occasionally on the infield.
Setz said the former reserve also worked out early in the year as a catcher, in case Duerlinger went down with an injury.
The Alverno-bound Sagat hit .507 and led the team with 10 walks.
"A lot of people might not have been happy to do some catching, but she looked forward to it and never complained," Setz said. "She was definitely a leader in how she played the game."
→ Meet the All-Suburban Team: Player profiles and photos. Page 15
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