PREP SOFTBALL

Type I Diabetes doesn't keep Young from catching for South Central

2012-05-28T20:00:00Z 2012-05-29T00:10:39Z Type I Diabetes doesn't keep Young from catching for South CentralBy Jim Hunsley jim.hunsley@nwi.com, (219) 548-4356 nwitimes.com

Cali Young had no problem toting around Madisyn Walter for a few steps when the winning pitcher leaped into her catcher's arms moments after South Central won last Friday's Class A softball sectional championship.

She hasn't always been able to exhibit that strength.

Young, a 6-foot senior catcher, was diagnosed with Type I Diabetes when she was 2 years old. She takes insulin a minimum of five times a day now to maintain a healthy blood-sugar level.

"It's just something I've dealt with most of my life," said Young, a two-time All-Porter County Conference selection. "I just focus on the game."

She's hitting .438 this season for the Satellites (19-9) with 10 extra-base hits and 20 RBIs. In her last four games, she's 11-for-14 with a double, home run, six RBIs and three runs scored.

"She's done a great job for us," first-year South Central coach John Hall said of Young. "I'm kind of glad she is straight with me when she's low."

Young still doesn't enjoy sitting out.

"Sometimes it's too low, and I have to stop," she said. "I'll treat it and be better in a half hour. That still could take me out the rest of the game.

"My mom (Julie) has helped me to stick with it. She's kept my heart in it."

The position she plays also does her no favors. Added equipment and the constant crouching behind the plate can be taxing, but she'll have it no other way.

"I've always caught," Young said. "My older brother was a catcher, so I wanted to be one, too."

Young was also slowed by a broken finger this season, sitting out six games behind the plate.

"A girl squared up to bunt, and I pulled my hand out from behind my back," Young said. "(The finger) got smashed by a foul ball.

"Hitting was definitely a bigger challenge, but I figured out how to hold the bat a way that made swinging a lot easier."

In last Friday's championship, Young made things easier for her pitcher, even though Triton mounted a late rally.

"Cali kept me up," Walter said. "She said, 'You got this.'"

"I feel like (the pitcher) is 100 percent my responsibility," Young said. "I've got to keep her head in it."

Young is now focused on No. 2 Lakewood Park Christian in today's 5 p.m. regional.

"I definitely feel like I'm on top of the world," Young said. "It was definitely all well worth it."

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