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October 25, 2013

OHS' Baker a rising star in softball

By Rob Centorani Staff Writer
The Daily Star

---- — Oneonta High junior Brieanna Baker will be in uniform this afternoon, but she won’t be playing soccer.

While her Yellowjackets soccer teammates will host Waverly in a Section Four Class B quarterfinal at 4 p.m. at Lloyd Baker Field, Baker will be in Florida showcasing her considerable softball talents.

Baker was selected to play in the Rising Stars All-American Game, which starts at 3:30 p.m. today at Plantation, Fla. Baker was one of two players from New York selected and among 52 from across the nation who’ll play.

“It’ll be televised and she’ll get to showcase her pitching talents for an inning or two and she’ll get an at-bat or two,” OHS softball coach Randy Brockway said. “It’s a wonderful opportunity for Brie to show how hard she’s worked the past few years.

“Coming from Oneonta, this is a chance for her to showcase her talents at a high caliber of play,” he continued. “It speaks to how far she’s come along as an individual player.”

Two weekends ago, Baker suffered an injury to her throwing shoulder during Oneonta’s 2-0 non-league soccer loss against Cicero North Syracuse. Baker hasn’t played for the Yellowjackets since hurting her right shoulder.

Brockway said Baker threw three days this week and did some hitting as well.

“She felt she could do this,” said Brockway, who added that Baker earned selection for the game through her summer travel team, the TC Tremors out of Binghamton.

OHS girls soccer coach Jerry Mackey said it’s a special time for girls sports at OHS. Along with Baker’s softball exploits, senior Mariah Ruff will play Division I basketball at St. Bonaventure and standout volleyball player Brittney Herrick will play for D-I Siena College next season.

“We’ve produced a number of kids in a number of sports and they’re able to make time for the sports they play in-season along with travel stuff for their other sports,” Mackey said. “This thing with BB is a perfect example.

“It’s a nice problem to have,” Mackey continued in reference to not having the speedy Baker today as the Yellowjackets take the first step in attempting to win a third straight Section Four Class B title.

Baker had a breakout sophomore softball season for the Yellowjackets in the spring. She earned First Team all-state honors in Class B in helping OHS to a 17-3 season that included a victory over eventual Class B state champion Windsor.

She struck out 257 batters in 138 innings and finished with an ERA of 1.37. Baker also batted .396.

TimeWarner Cable subscribers can watch the Rising Stars All-American game live on channel 315.

Rob Centorani can be reached at or 607-432-1000, ext. 209.