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Zoe Has No Regrets


Friends’ Central Softball Trying to Improve

(Photo Left) Friends’ Central softball player Eva Bartholomew (#11) is out at second base to end the game. Photo by Sarah J. Glover.

Zoe Shoemaker is a Friends’ Central lifer, having started at the private Quaker school in Wynnewood as a nursery school student. She knows that her experience, academically, socially and philosophically is not necessarily the same as a student at a public school, like nearby Lower Merion, Harriton or Haverford High. “Friends’ Central is a caring community that consists of caring teachers and students,” she said. “It is unlike any other school due to its commitment to service, strong academics, Quaker values and team participation in sports. Meeting for worship is a very unique opportunity, where students starting at a very young age can reflect, listen or share opinions and thoughts, if they feel moved to do so. Meeting occurs every Wednesday for 40 minutes, and it is something that I know I will always remember about my experience at Friends’ Central. Both of my brothers graduated from this school and always say the same thing, that what they miss the most is sitting in meeting for worship every Wednesday as a school community.”  Shoemaker said that the same community spirit taken on by the school in activities like Meeting for Worship and weekly assemblies draw parallels to her team’s experience in softball. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always lead to wins. Actually this year it’s more losses than victories but she said it’s fun nevertheless. The sophomore centerfielder is considered one of the team’s top, if not the best, players. Recently, she was asked to play shortstop due to an illness suffered by another player.  The team is 3-7 overall and took a tough 14-5 home loss to Little Flower on May 6. The game had extra significance because there were hundreds of fans at their first game all year, due to alumni homecoming day. “During homecoming, the atmosphere was exciting and we were happy to play at our home field for the visiting alumni,” she said. “We usually do not have a lot of fans at our weekday games so it was really nice having parents and alumni supporting us.”

The girls are not engaged in a championship season, but have accumulated wins over Westtown, Episcopal Academy, and Friends’ Select. Shoemaker has seen what big wins can do for the team’s psyche and what tough losses can do as well. “I think our team learns a lot when playing against better competition, but it can also very easily bring our confidence down. When we play better competition, it helps us focus on the fact that we need to work on hitting as well as knowing where the play is in the field at all times. It reminds us that we need to give all our effort during every inning and need to play collectively as a team.”

Shoemaker bats leadoff for the team and is hitting .373 this season. Her teammates regale her with a song every time she comes to bat in the first inning, she said. She complimented coach Steve Colucci, who has been coaching softball at Friends’ Central for ten years, and Assistant Coach Bob Bartholomew for staying focused on teaching the game properly. “We usually do the same drills in practice everyday that focus on throwing and batting as well as situations that could occur in the field. Two drills that we do to help improve our throwing are called the “star drill” and “fill the field”. They both work on accurately making throws to a teammate.” Despite the loss May 7, she loves playing for this team and going to this school. She’s never known any different feelings about her alma mater. “This is my twelfth year at Friends’ Central and my favorite part about the academic aspect of school is how kind and understanding every single teacher is,” Shoemaker said. “I also love that there is not a day that goes by where I do not learn something new and exciting.”

 

Zoe Has No Regrets
Jeremy Treatman - Contributor

Jeremy Treatman is the founder and co-director of the Scholastic Play-by-Play Classics and Sports Broadcasting Camps. Over 50 NBA players, including Lebron James, Kevin Durant, and Rajon Rondo played in his events when they were in high school. Jeremy wrote high school sports for the INQUIRER for 10 years, and was the first TV reporter for the HIgh School Sports Show on Channel 29 from 1994-2001. He currently is Comcast's announcer for all high school games.

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