By Jeremy Balan
Anyone who watched Lowell High School’s Chloe Roddy play in the Academic Athletic Association championship game saw just how much she can impact a softball game.
The senior had a pair of two-run home runs and five RBIs in an 11-1 rout over rival Washington to pick up the AAA title, but it was her body of work, encompassing the whole season, that earned her the honor of SanFranPreps.com Player of the Year.
After missing four early games while still recovering from an offseason knee surgery, Roddy used her remaining 17 games to put up staggering numbers.
Roddy hit .512 with 52 RBIs, 16 doubles, 10 triples and eight home runs to lead a potent Lowell offense and run away in the race for AAA Player of the Year.
“Chloe has always been a solid athlete. She could have picked any sport and I’m so glad she left her mark with Lowell softball,” said Lowell head coach Sascha Taylor-Ray. “Her strength to connect with the ball and send it into the outfield almost every time is amazing.”
The 5-foot-10 first baseman will not be playing in college, but did get some interest from the UCLA softball program. Instead, Roddy will enter the University of Southern California’s music program as an accomplished pianist.
Roddy may have taken the top honor, but that does not diminish the season of St. Ignatius senior Jordan Newell.
The Santa Clara-bound shortstop hit .409 for the season with 37 RBIs and 10 extra-base hits, but her greatest feat doesn’t show up in the box score.
After a midseason shoulder injury prevented her from playing in the field, Newell spent the rest of the season as the team’s designated player and continued to lead the Wildcats’ offense, including standout performances in two games against rival Sacred Heart Cathedral.
It’s no surprise that St. Ignatius assistant coach John Vincent called her “one of the best players in the 20-year history of SI softball.”
Roddy and Newell were far and above the standout players in the City this year, but the remaining first-team selections are full of talent, including several players returning for more next season.
Dual-threat pitchers in Washington’s Alice Cen (.553 batting average), Michelle Willis (.411) and University’s Emily Pham (.480) kept batters at bay throughout the season while doing their own damage at the plate.
Catchers Raquel Gaffud of Sacred Heart and Madison Donohue-Wolfe of Lowell fulfilled their battery duties while hitting .410 and .462, respectively.
West Catholic Athletic League representatives St. Ignatius and Sacred Heart round out the first-team selections with Wildcats Helen Buse and Rachael Garrison, and Irish shortstop Anna Palter.
SanFranPreps.com Player of the Year
Chloe Roddy, senior first baseman, Lowell
Helen Buse, senior outfielder, St. Ignatius
Alice Cen, junior pitcher, Washington
Madison Donohue-Wolfe, junior catcher, Lowell
Raquel Gaffud, senior catcher, Sacred Heart Cathedral
Rachael Garrison, sophomore outfielder, St. Ignatius
Jordan Newell, senior shortstop, St. Ignatius
Anna Palter, junior shortstop, Sacred Heart Cathedral
Emily Pham, sophomore pitcher, University
Michelle Willis, junior pitcher, Lowell
Megan Chiem, junior shortstop, Washington
Julia Gallegos, freshman pitcher, Sacred Heart Cathedral
Emi Goldstone, senior catcher, St. Ignatius
Jamie Hom, senior outfielder, Washington
Sawyer Hulbert, senior pitcher, St. Ignatius
Lola Less, senior shortstop, Urban
Sophie Owens, junior pitcher, Bay
Erin Reid, junior catcher, University
Samantha Yee, freshman third baseman, Lowell
Tyler Garcia, senior, Lincoln
Elena Goldstein, junior catcher, Urban
Gretel Gunther, freshman outfielder, Lowell
Sam Hernandez, sophomore second baseman, University
Devyn Hocevar-Smith, freshman third baseman, University
Nai Ilalio, Mercy
Michelle Lee, senior, Lincoln
Donna Liu, senior, Balboa
Carrie McKewan, sophomore shortstop, St. Ignatius
Lucy Nguyen, sophomore shortstop, Mission
Jennifer Otoshi, senior outfielder, Sacred Heart Cathedral
Molly Owens, senior shortstop, Bay
Stephanie Owyeong, senior catcher, Galileo
Cherlyn Sandal, senior, Balboa
Chelsea Stewart, sophomore pitcher, Wallenberg
Katie Tam, junior shortstop, Lowell
Abigail Young, senior outfielder, Lowell
Mandy Zeng, sophomore pitcher, Mission
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