By John Knebels
LEVITTOWN – Whatever it was that they fed the parish softball players at St. Michael the Archangel in Levittown, it must have been pretty nutritious.
After recent pedestrian success at the CYO level, St. Michael’s fielded six different teams – two each at the novice, junior varsity and varsity levels – and dominated most of the competition.
When the season was over, St. Michael’s had captured three Region 19 championships, highlighted by the varsity team that advanced to the archdiocesan tournament and won two games before being defeated.
For good measure, the St. Michael’s junior varsity boys’ baseball team won the Region 19 championship.
Tracy Brasier, the parish softball director, was very impressed.
“We had a great group of people in the parish that really helped out,” said Brasier. “The different coaches did a great job, and more than anything else, our talent level was really very high.”
Although St. Michael’s varsity team hit and fielded very well, it was the pitching by eighth grader Stacie DeNucci and seventh grader Gina Massaro that proved to be the difference. Then again, in softball, without standout pitching, it’s virtually impossible to be consistently successful.
Add to that a host of fans who attended the championship games and it proved to be a great experience for all involved.
“We kept sending emails out to everyone keeping them informed of how well we were doing,” said Brasier. “You wouldn’t believe how many people came out to support them. The players were so pumped.
“We benefited from having so many players who came out for the team. That says a lot about the quality of softball in our parish.”
St. Michael’s also was able to renovate a softball field behind the school with the aid of approximately 75 helpers. In the past, St. Michael’s had to borrow fields to accommodate its teams, although Conwell-Egan High School allowed St. Michael’s to use its home turf to play home games.
“Stuff like that helps out a lot,” said Brasier.
This has been an incredible year for Brasier. Wife to husband Jeff and mother to daughter Caitlin, Brasier received the sacraments for the first time this past spring after preparing in the RCIA.
Although she had started attending Mass after she met her husband, it wasn’t until about a year ago that Brasier considered becoming a Catholic.
“I kept going to Mass and enjoying it and I thought to myself, ‘Wait a minute, why not just become a Catholic?'” she said. “It was exciting to go through the process, and it’s been a very special time for me and my family.”
John Knebels can be reached at email@example.com.