Niagara Gazette

Sports

May 4, 2007

HS SOFTBALL: GI junior Shari Geblein is the complete package

GRAND ISLAND — All the Grand Island softball team needed was a little leadership and guidance.

It appears as if the Vikings have found their solution in first-year head coach Pat Lester and junior captain Shari Geblein.

Lester has brought renewed enthusiasm to the program and it’s been Geblein’s job to help relay the message to her teammates.

“She’s by far the leader on this team,” Lester said. “She keeps the girls positive throughout the game and makes sure everyone knows where they are going with the ball. She really keeps this team together.”

Geblein said she realized an opportunity was there and she just seized it.

“I’ve taken the role of leadership because that’s what this team needs,” the third baseman said.

Lester added that Geblein’s leadership is not only displayed in her actions and vocals, but her play on the field as well.

“She makes plays you wouldn’t expect a third baseman to make,” the coach said. “She always knows exactly what this team needs.”

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Geblein said she’s accustomed to third base after spending the past seven years or so there, but it’s been her diminishing chances at the plate that have frustrated her a bit.

“The other day against Lew-Port, the girl walked me with the bases loaded, so it’s pretty frustrating, but you just have to do whatever you can to get the job done,” she said.

It’s that type of attitude that makes her one of the hardest outs in the Niagara Frontier League, according to Lester.

“She just finds a way on (base) all the time,” he said.

With Geblein leading the charge and the rest of the young Vikings steadily improving, coach and player are excited about the future, both this season and beyond.

“We’re not exactly where we need to be, but we’re getting there,” Lester said. “I’m seeing progress every game.”

Geblein added: “We still have the potential to do better. I think we can do some damage (in the second half of the NFL schedule).”

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