Danielle Frye’s high school softball career officially ended last Thursday when she pitched four strong innings in the Class C-D Senior All-Star game at Cony High School in Augusta.
But the Georges Valley righthander almost didn’t have her senior year, as she suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee in January while playing basketball for the Thomaston school.
Not wanting to miss her senior year of softball, Frye elected to put off surgery, and it paid off, as she pitched the Buccaneers into the Western Maine Class C final, where they lost to eventual state champion Telstar of Bethel.
“I was really happy that I played through it. It was totally worth it,” said Frye, who led the Bucs to state championships her freshman and sophomore campaigns.
Frye wore a brace on her leg throughout the spring which acted as her ACL, and since her left knee is the one she plants with, it made pitching even more challenging.
But Frye looked strong on Thursday with some pop on her fastball.
“I hadn’t thrown in a couple of weeks, so I was really loose,” said Frye, who plans on having surgery in early July. “I hadn’t picked up my glove [since the Western Maine final], but sometimes a break is what you need.”
Frye plans on attending the University of Maine in the fall, but doesn’t plan on playing softball at least her freshman year.
When her injury was originally diagnosed over the winter, her whole world almost came crushing down on her shoulders.
“When I heard the doctors say torn ACL …. I almost cried,” Frye said.
But she hung tough, and said she has no regrets about playing with her injury.
Donato to coach Bulldogs
John Donato, one of the most accomplished girls basketball coaches in state history, will coach the Lawrence High of Fairfield girls this winter.
He replaces Jason Pellerin, who resigned to spend more time with his young family. Pellerin coached Lawrence for eight seasons.
Donato spent the last five seasons coaching the Mount View girls. He garnered his 400th career victory at the Thorndike school in 2006 and guided the Mustangs to an appearance in the Eastern Maine Class B semifinals in 2009.
Donato has also coached at Messalonskee of Oakland and Houlton, and his Houlton squads won five Class B state championships and 11 regional titles in his 17-year tenure at that school.
Jonesport-Beals hires Merchant
Adam Merchant, who coached the Jonesport-Beals girls basketball team during the 2005-06 campaign, is back for his second tenure with the program.
He’ll succeed Skipper Alley, who recently was named the women’s basketball coach at the University of Maine at Machias.
Merchant guided the Royalettes for one season before serving as Alley’s assistant coach during his tenure.
Jonesport-Beals, a Class D school which plays a challenging schedule that includes teams such as Calais, Woodland and Washington Academy of East Machias, advanced to the regional quarterfinals before being eliminated by top seed Central Aroostook of Mars Hill.
The Royalettes didn’t graduate any seniors from the 2009-10 squad, which featured five freshmen, four juniors and two sophomores.