Defense Delivers with Bey, Fowler
Leusch, John, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Byline: John Leusch Daily Herald Sports Writer
Two all-conference players.
Katie Bey and Suzanne Fowler know what it takes to win.
And that's exactly what has been happening for their Barrington softball team, which will become the Mid-Suburban League record-holder for most shutouts in a season.
Part of the reason for that is the defensive play of Bey, the rightfielder, and Fowler, the shortstop.
"These two young ladies understand the importance of team defense," said coach Perry Peterson, who is in his fourth season at Barrington.
"Their leadership and team spirit are a key factor in our team's success."
Both have been around the varsity scene since their freshman seasons.
"I still remember being in the dugout in that sectional final game against Mundelein (in 1993)," Bey said.
"I was just brought up to the varsity. It was like a shock. We won that night and the next day we're on the bus going to Pekin."
As a sophomore, Bey served as the Fillies' designated hitter and became the starting rightfielder as a junior.
"I like defense a lot," she says. "Last year, I was kind of scared and not real sure of myself in the field. I don't know what happened, but now I feel more confident and I know I can make the catches."
She said playing with the Barrington Hurricanes summer team has made a big difference.
"That helped me a lot," she said. "Just watching and being with those kind of players, I learned a lot about softball."
Bey could hardly avoid playing sports while growing up.
She is the youngest of Bill and Barbara's eight children, and six have played sports at Barrington.
"I remember playing catch in my backyard with my brothers," she said, starting to smile. "I'd get hit with the ball and go in the house and cry to my mom but I stuck with the sports."
And she couldn't be happier.
Bey's double in the 1994 MSL title game helped spark the Fillies to a 3-1 win over Prospect, and last season she was the first Fillie to collect 4 hits a in game, earning her team a pizza party from coach Peterson.
"I've learned the team is really important," she says of her four years at Barrington. "Everyone must work together prepared for every game.
"Suzanne and I have been friends for four years. We didn't even know each other when we came to Barrington as freshmen.
"But I'm sure we'll stay friends for a long time. We're so close. We can share secrets and talk about anything."
Fowler was called up to play shortstop her freshman year when Jaime Clark suffered an ankle injury.
"Actually I was surprised when he brought me up," Fowler said.
"I've learned a lot of about the rules of the game and how to play from Mr. Peterson.
"I'm very lucky to be in a program like this because we've been right up with the best of them my four years."
Fowler grew up in Florida where she and her brother played little league baseball.
Her parents (Paul and Delores) moved the family to Barrington and she began playing fast pitch softball in the park district.
Fowler ranks 12th in her senior class at Barrington and plans to study electrical engineering at Northwestern University next fall. …