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Burcham To Play At Kaskaskia College

Brooke Burcham signed to play softball at Kaskaskia College after graduation. Brooke is pictured with her parents Matt and Sheila Burcham. Back Row from left to right: former NCHS softball coach Dempsey Witte, current NCHS softball coach Shaun Renth, NCHS Athletic Director Alicia Heggemeier, Kaskaskia College Softball coach Torey Crowell, and former Kaskaskia College Assistant Coach Robbie Tate.

By Brent Huelsmann

After graduation, NCHS senior Brooke Burcham has decided to play softball at Kaskaskia College. Burcham will head into her senior season this spring. Last season, the Hornettes lost in the Sectional Semi-Final to Pinckneyville.

Burcham began last season starting at third base for Nashville, but moved to the outfield midway through the season, where she played the rest of the year. Over her time with the Hornettes, Burcham has been a very versatile player, playing all over the diamond which both Hornettes coach Shaun Renth, and Kaskaskia College Coach Torey Crowell agree is a big strength.

Coach Renth said of Burcham, “She is very versatile, she will do whatever we need for the team. Played some third. I think when she was a freshmen she even played some shortstop. Last year more outfield, but she’ll play anywhere we need her to.”

Although Burcham played in the infield to start the year, she says she prefers the outfield. “My favorite position would be outfield of course, it’s a lot more relaxing out there, but the infield still has a place in my heart.”

Burcham got the signing out of the way before the season started, which she believes is a huge relief. “It allows me to really focus on the season thats coming, really just play for my team and not try to figure out what my stats are to go here, or here. Now I have that set in stone and can really focus on my love of the game.”

As for her role for Kaskaskia College, coach Crowell said it will depend. “I’ve got a lot of my sophomores coming back next year, so it all kind of depends what situation we’re in at the time, but she’s great at both positions. We’ll use her all the way around.”

Last season, Burcham batted .337 with two home runs, and 25 RBIs. Burcham was second on the team with 35 runs scored last season. Burcham was third on the team with 18 walks last season. A consistent force in the lineup last season, Coach Renth expects more of the same in the spring. “Very similar to last year. Probably hit somewhere in the middle of the lineup, play some outfield for us. Just all of the other girls. I expect more out of her this year because she is a senior and we need more out of everybody because if we don’t have more than what we had last year, we will be going home early. I expect the same out of her this year, if not more.”

As for Burcham’s goals this season, she said, “obviously, make it back to state as a team, and hopefully be the senior leaders that take us there. Really push myself and become a better athlete for myself, with my batting average and errors.”

Burcham said she will miss a lot about playing in Nashville, but miss the team most of all. “Playing with all of my friends, its gonna be a huge difference from everybody I know, to meeting new people, but I’m sure it will all work out. But really just playing with my friends that I’ve played  with all of my life.”

Burcham plans to get her Associates Degree at Kaskaskia College before transferring. Burcham wants to become a nurse and work with kids in a pediatric hospital.

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