PALATINE, Ill. – Harper freshman softball player Raegan Fingerman (Fox River Grove, Ill./Barrington) has played a vital role in the success of the Harper College softball team this season. A versatile player who can play multiple positions, Fingerman has been on a tear at the plate in recent day for a Hawks team that, since starting 3-7, has won seven of their last 10 games to get to 10-10 on the season and 8-5 in conference play.
In her last nine games, she is hitting an incredible .571 (16-for-28) with three homers and 21 RBIs. For these reasons and many more, Fingerman can now call herself the 18th Harper College Athlete of the Week for the 2013-14 school year and first-ever Harper softball player to win the award.
Fingerman played for head coach Cray Allen and assistants Lynsey Ciezki and Matt Bloch for four years on their various travel teams when she was in high school. Following graduation, the Barrington High School product attended NCAA Div. III Ripon College in Wisconsin for the fall 2013 semester and was a part of the softball team.
Ripon wasn't the right fit for her, so she decided she wanted to play softball at Harper for Allen and his staff. Fingerman's decision is paying off for her and the Hawks. Through 20 games, she leads the team in batting average (.478), hits (32) home runs (4-tied-1st), RBIs (35), doubles (6), triples (2-tied-1st), on-base percentage (.514) and slugging percentage (.806). Her RBI and home run totals rank 12th and 16th in the nation, respectively.
While her statistical outputs are impressive, her head coach is more impressed with how she has matured into a great collegiate softball player.
"She knows what it takes to win. She adds the toughness we needed this year and has a tremendous amount of confidence in herself and her team," Allen said. "She respects the game so much and understands it is a privilege to play the game of softball."
Allen describes Fingerman as a great teammate who will keep you laughing outside the lines and will give you confidence and security inside the lines. Allen also said "she has turned a good swing into a great one." He also credits her versatility in the field, as she has played catcher, shortstop and first base this season.
Fingerman offered an explanation for her recent success.
"I know every time I go up to the plate, I need to contribute something to my team. I'm seeing the ball well at the plate," Fingerman said. "Coach has worked with my swing for a long time, and I've seen it develop."
Fingerman, a physical education major, thinks her team can finish strong in conference and make a deep postseason run as long as they keep playing well. She sees the competitive fire in her teammates.
"I can see that they love the sport even more this year," she said.