A-K Valley Senior Spotlight: Burrell’s Cassidy Novak

Monday, May 29, 2023 | 9:14 AM

The end of the school year is approaching rapidly and for the seniors, the end of the spring sports season marks the end of an era. For Burrell softball senior Cassidy Novak, there’s a lot to reflect on from this past year.

“My favorite part about game days were always the bus rides to away games,” Novak said. “We blasted the speakers and got hyped up. Winning was also an amazing part of the game, too.”

Cassidy is the daughter of Lauren and Brian Novak. She is a member of the high honor roll with distinguished honors and is part of the art club.

“I’ve been playing softball for about 11 years now,” said Novak. “A lot of my friends were playing at the time, so I decided to try it too.”

Novak took some time out of her schedule to sit down and answer some questions for a Senior Spotlight Q&A:

Burrell turned things around midway through the season and went on a six-game winning streak. What came together for the team during that time?

I think we worked hard and got more excitement going in the dugout. We really cheered each other on and picked everyone up when we were down.

Avonworth is the top team in your section, and you played two close games this season. What was it like to play them, and what did you learn from the games?

They are a great team and bring good competition. We came together as a team, worked on basics, played great defense and offense, and in both matchups, we knew we had to stay consistent and not let our game down.

Your senior class is small but remarkable. Tell me about the relationship you have with all of the seniors.

We have a good and tight relationship. We have played together for a long time and all share a bond. I love all of them as my best friends and will really miss them when it’s time to go to college.

Katie Armstrong, one of your teammates, is one of the best strikeout pitchers in the WPIAL. Have you ever hit off of her in practice?

I don’t believe that I have, other than bunting. She throws a lot of different pitches here and there and is all around a great pitcher. I heard she is very hard to hit off of.

You are a first baseman. What type of responsibilities come with that position?

I have to be a wall and let nothing get past me. I have to field any throw that comes to me and back up my teammates when things happen.

Bunting is a critical part in the game of softball, and good teams can play small ball well. What is your biggest concern when small ball is being played?

Communication is huge to make sure you know who has the ball and making the little plays that are needed.

What type of batter do you think you are?

I think all around, I’m the type of batter that tries to move people around to where we need them. I try to be a power hitter, and I have a few good hits that I am proud of. If I need to bunt, I will get down and get the job done.

Burrell has made the playoffs for 17 seasons straight. What makes the program so strong?

I think team bonding is a huge thing. We have to work together, and communication is a huge part of all of this.

What is one thing that you will miss about playing with Burrell?

I will miss having my dad as my coach. He’s been there for every season and coached me through everything. I think it will impact me when I’m going to college and coming back to watch.

What are your future plans?

I plan to attend Kent State University to major in architecture.

What is one piece of advice you’d like to leave with your teammates?

Don’t let anything as small as a bad play get to you. You will have many opportunities to pick up and try again.


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