Hampton infielder Addy Maguire inks with Edinboro

Saturday, February 18, 2023 | 11:01 AM

When Addy Maguire showed up for Hampton softball tryouts as a freshman three years ago, coach Ron Fedell was baffled.

“I had no idea that she was even out there,” Fedell said. “The first time I saw her in the gym, I saw her move and I saw her hit, and I thought to myself, ‘This kid is going to be an excellent player.’ “

Pretty soon, a lot of people knew who she was and felt the same way.

Maguire, an All-Section 3-5A third baseman last spring as a junior, signed a national letter of intent Jan. 26 to attend Edinboro. She picked the PSAC Division II school over Fairmont (W.Va) State.

Maguire was an unknown at her first practice because she didn’t play softball at Hampton Middle School. Instead, she was a standout track sprinter who played softball for an AAU travel team. Once she reached high school, she gave up track and field, another spring sport, to focus on softball.

“I ended up choosing softball because I knew that was my passion and what I wanted to do in college,” she said.

She didn’t, however, want to attend Edinboro after she received a text that the school was interested in recruiting her. But that changed after she took a visit to the Erie-area school in December.

“I thought, ‘No way. I don’t want to go there,’ ” Maguire said. “And then I went there and I really just fell in love with it.”

Edinboro softball coach Dan Gierlak, who is entering his 35th season, said the feeling was mutual.

“I really, really like the kid,” he said. “I’ve been impressed with her as a person and as a player. I’ve told her before that ‘I’m expecting big things out of you.’ I just think she will fit in well with our kids and she’s the type of player that I love having on my team.”

Maguire has started at third base for Hampton the past two seasons, but she was recruited to Edinboro as a catcher, her position on the Team Pennsylvania travel softball team. She is expected to move behind the plate for the Talbots this spring following the loss of four-year starter Bella Henzler, a freshman at James Madison.

Maguire last season hit .422 (19-45) with one home run, 17 RBIs and 21 runs scored as a team captain for the Talbots. While the 5-foot-6 Maguire is so athletic that Fedell said she could play everywhere from shortstop to center field, she developed a passion for catcher at an early age. She was about 10 or 11 years old when her travel team was searching for someone to play behind the plate. Maguire, mainly a shortstop or third baseman up to that point, had already learned she didn’t like pitching, so she raised her hand. She possessed the fast reaction time, quick release and strong arm that are so valuable to the position.

“They were looking for new catchers,” she said. “Catching always interested me, and I knew I didn’t want to do pitching. I knew that I would be good at it, so I figured I would give it a try.”

Edinboro went 8-23 last season and has only two winning seasons in the past 12 years. But the catcher position looks up for grabs in upcoming years. Every catcher on the current Fighting Scots roster this season is listed as a junior. Gierlak said Maguire could make an impact in spring 2024 regardless of where she plays.

“I think that Addy is a good enough athlete that she can play other spots, too, and be productive,” Gierlak said. “She’s got an opportunity to come in and help us right away. She really does.”


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