Echevarria is catching fans eyes
April 27, 2022
Sequoit softball is back, and standout junior Eden Echevarria is ready to lead the team. Echevarria is a legacy of several former baseball and softball players. The sport has surrounded her since she was little, and she fell in love with it at a young age. She played softball for eleven years, starting in the Antioch Youth Little League softball program and working her way up to high school varsity.
So far, in her softball career, Echevarria has played for numerous teams. To be exact, she has played for seven different teams. Those teams include Rec League, the Antioch All-Star team, Antioch Travel Softball, Bordertown Bandits, Northern Ice, and Stateline Fury, and she is currently playing for Illinois Chill Gold, the top premier team in the state. Echevarria is on the varsity team for the third year in high school softball. She has played with the varsity since she was a freshman, but unfortunately, her first season was canceled due to COVID-19.
Echevarria takes softball very seriously and puts in a lot of effort during the off-season and downtime to ensure that she is one of the best around.
“I hit every day off the tee because fundamentals are the most important thing,” Echevarria said. “I have coaches that help me work on different skills. My hitting coach helps my mechanics stay in place, my throwing coach instructs me on how to get the most out of my throw, and my trainer prepares my body to be primed for success in my sport.”
Echevarria is very talented at all aspects of her sport. However, her offense is like no other. Echevarria’s teammates and coaches agree that she is a special kind of player with how good she is at hitting.
“Eden is really good at hitting. That would have to be her best quality,” senior Gabby Debevec said. “She was already named All-State as a sophomore last year and is looking to do even more this year.”
Head Coach Anthony Rocco has a lot of good to say about Echevarria’s unique versatility.
“Last year as our lead off hitter, she set the table for the offense. She has elite speed and bat to punish a team from the start of a game. On the base paths she is always a threat to steal or take an extra base. As one of our top two hitters we want to maximize the amount of times a team would see her in a game,” Rocco said. “Defensively she can make those special plays that most players dream of making. She also has a motor that never stops running on defense.”
In all sports, but the case of softball, it is more than a physical game. Softball has a lot to do with mental strength. The best players are the ones that can tune out all other distractions and focus on what needs to get accomplished. Echevarria is one of those players; she can ignore any issues outside of softball and just focus on the game. “Her determination, focus, and hard work. When she sets a goal she does whatever is necessary to accomplish it,” Rocco said.
Echevarria sets an excellent example for everyone else in the program and the young girls who watch her play. She is a great leader, always trying to help others and cheering them on.
“Eden is always a super supporter,” sophomore Aubrey Ulstch said. “ She is always cheering everyone on, and her hype pushes us to be at our best.”
Echevarria’s work ethic is like no other. She puts in more work and time getting better at softball than spending time with friends.
“Eden sticks out from other players because she isn’t afraid to give it her all. She is always trying her hardest on plays to get the out or help out the team,” sophomore Grace Green said. “She always gets the job done.”
Echevarria’s hard work, paired with highlight plays and the show she puts on at the plate, has gained notice from different college softball programs and coaches. She has accepted an offer to play D1 softball at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Echevarria is exceptionally excited to be part of the Badger’s Softball team and she is proud of where her hard work has gotten her.
“I’m excited to have the opportunity to compete at the highest collegiate level,” Echevarria said. “Playing for a D1 Power 5 school in the Big10 conference is a huge accomplishment for me.”
Along with playing softball at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, she plans to get a good degree in either business or engineering to get a good job after college.
Echevarria has taken a lot of suitable lessons out of softball; instead, it is regarding sports or life lessons.
“It’s taught me perseverance and getting through the mistakes, slumps, and hard seasons,” Echevarria said. “Softball is a game of failure and if you’re not willing to fail, you cannot succeed. It’s also taught me to work and that nothing is given to you. One of the biggest ones for me is that the game has taught me to be confident because I have put in the work to be the best player on the field.”
Echevarria has worked very hard to prepare for this season. With the countless hours of work, long days, and opportunities to hang out with friends given up, she is ready as she will ever be to help lead her team to a state championship.