CARMEL | The region was well represented in the ICGSA All-Star Classic at Cherry Tree Softball Complex in Carmel Saturday.
And not just because the North featured seven area athletes and was coached by Lake Central's Jeff Sherman.
Indians' senior Nikki Adams was named Classic MVP after belting a grand slam in the day's opener. It was the biggest play of that game and garnered a plaque for Adams despite it being her only hit.
"I knew (South Putnam pitcher Brooke Boetjer) wasn't going to give me much to hit and I had to be really aggressive," Adams said. "I saw that first pitch, it was kind of high and inside and that's where I like them, so I just swung."
Her home run powered the North to an 8-0 win in the first game. In Game 2, the South used strong pitching to post a 3-0 victory.
Boetjer started the game with a perfect inning and the North didn't tally a hit off four South hurlers until the fifth when Hebron's Mollie Lindeman poked one through.
Lindman also pitched two innings in the second game, working out of a bases-loaded jam in the fifth and another with two runners on in the sixth.
"My goal today was not to let any runs in, and I achieved that goal," Lindeman said. "I just knew (with runners on) my spins needed to be tighter, I need to be better."
Boetjer would be named Miss Softball during the intermission between the two games. Andrean Nicole Steinbach, The Times Player of the Year, was a finalist for Miss Softball.
"Not a lot people actually know me from the south and I wanted to show myself," Steinbach said. "(Boetjer) is a very good pitcher and a very good player, but (Miss Softball) is what I worked for and you can't really say anything else besides that."
Steinbach threw four innings between the two games, allowing three hits but no runs and striking out four.
South Putnam swept the awards, as Chris Jones was named Coach of the Year. Sherman was also nominated for Coach of the Year, but his vote went for Jones.
"All he does is win," Sherman said. "He does a great job with those girls and he's very, very deserving of that honor."
Kankakee Valley's Ashley Dobson pitched two scoreless innings. Andrean's Kaitlin Barajas had a single in the first game and Crown Point's RaeAnna Jenks represented the Bulldogs.