Lehtomaki gets it done at plate and behind it

  • Sadey Lehtomaki takes a cut against Frontier during the season. Lehtomaki leads the Athol softball team with 22 RBI. FILE PHOTO

  • Sadey Lehtomaki makes a run at the defense for the Athol field hockey team in the Fall. FOR THE ATHOL DAILY NEWS/MIKE PHILLIPS

Staff Writer
Published: 5/24/2019 10:50:10 AM
Modified: 5/24/2019 10:49:56 AM

When Sadey Lehtomaki got the call to play varsity softball as an eighth-grader for the Athol softball team, she was ready. 

She had played catcher since her youth.

“I’ve done it since Little League,” Lehtomaki said. “It’s been pretty much my position all through middle school and now.”

Now a freshman, Lehtomaki’s hitting at the plate and defense behind it have helped the Red Raiders position themselves for a playoff berth.

Lehtomaki has a robust .442 batting average for the Red Raiders with two homers and 22 RBI.  

The 22 RBI is the most on the team.

Lehtomaki spends a lot of time working on her swing, keeping her head from turning away from the pitch.

She has also shown a tremendous arm behind the plate, gunning down runners with regularity.

There is also chemistry with Athol starting pitcher Lindsey LeBlanc dating back to youth softball.

“Lindsey and I are good friends,” Lehtomaki said. “We have a good relationship out on the field. We just go together. Ever since little league even it’s been me and her. Pitching and catching. Last year we were the two eighth graders that got pulled up.”

With LeBlanc in the circle and Lehtomaki behind the plate, the Red Raiders are set at the positions for the next three years with room for growth and improvement. 

Lehtomaki was a standout for the Athol field hockey team in the fall using her speed to burst up the sidelines.

Many on the team, including Lehtomaki, are still learning the game. 

“I’m decent at it,” Lehtomaki said. “We definitely can work as a team more and talk. Practice more and work on the fundamentals. We have a young team.”

During the winter, Lehtomaki uses indoor track to stay in shape as a sprinter for the Red Raiders. 

“Sprinting is what I like to do,” Lehtomaki said. “I am not a distance runner.”

The Red Raiders need two more wins to make the playoffs as of publication. 

“We all need to keep a good attitude,” Lehtomaki said. “Not get mad at one another. Talk and communicate with each other. Cheering each other on.”

After Friday, the Red Raiders play Chicopee on Saturday at Gardner on Tuesday and at Mohawk Trail on Thursday.

Athol lost last season to top-seeded and eventual Div. 2 champion Greenfield High School in the quarterfinals.

20 Questions

Favorite Food: Nachos

Favorite professional athlete: Mookie Betts

Favorite social media: Snapchat

Favorite show: Grey’s Anatomy 

Favorite vacation spot: Going to Spain this summer for softball.

Role model: My mom.

Favorite movie:The Polar Express

Pet peeve: When I have to repeat myself.

Career aspirations: I want to be a nurse. 

Favorite website: Google.com

Favorite animal: pig.

Best pizza in Athol/Orange: Athol House of Pizza

Gameday ritual: I don’t really have one.

Current sneaker brand: Nike 

Favorite music genre: Hip hop

Favorite artist: N/A

Best school subject: English

Worst school subject: Math

Special talent: N/A

If I had a million dollars, I would: Save it for something important. 

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