The RailCats didn't have to look far to find their next play-by-play announcer.
On Monday, Laura Hoover, a 2015 Chesterton High School graduate, was named the team's broadcaster and media coordinator.
"It's like a fairy tale," said Hoover, who spent last summer calling Mystic Schooners games in the New England Collegiate Baseball League.
She's been in job-seeking mode for a while, and saw that broadcaster/media relations chief Jared Shlensky's departure after last season created an opening for the Region's independent minor league team.
Then a few weeks ago, the club reached out to gauge if she was interested in the job.
"Twenty minutes from home? How could I not be?" Hoover said.
She'd spent time honing her craft at Goshen College. graduating last May with a degree in broadcasting, after getting her start in the business at WDSO-FM, Chesterton's student station.
"I thought I gained every skill set that I could possibly try," Hoover said. "My backup plan was something in sports, production, anything along those lines if play-by-play wasn't an option."
But the dream turned into reality, and now Hoover will be working for the team she's been watching play for years.
Though female play-by-play announcers are rare in minor league baseball, Hoover doesn't see herself as a trailblazer.
"No, I mean there are seven or eight people who have done what I've done," she said. "I'm just the next person to do it. It's my work — I never really thought about it that much."
Though her official start date isn't till April 1, news has spread quickly.
"I wasn't expecting the response I got, the overwhelming positivity," Hoover said.
The RailCats open the American As
sociation season on the road May 19 against the Sioux Falls Canaries, with the home opener scheduled for May 22 against the Milwaukee Milkmen.
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