Suker goes from bat girl to pitching star

WHITE PLAINS — Last weekend marked the second trip to the Empire State Games for Cyrilla Suker.

Though this was her first time as a player.

About a decade ago, Suker was a bat girl for the Adirondack squad on which her older sister played. This year, Suker decided to try out and made the team as a pitcher. She helped earn a key win that led to Adirondack’s silver medal.
"I was 12," Suker said of her bat girl days. "I was the same age as our bat girl. We’ve talked about a lot of the similar situations. When we got our medals, it was cute that they called her out. I remember that, too."

Suker did not pitch in the gold-medal game against Long Island, but she pitched against the team from the Island earlier in the day and helped the girls from the North Country earn a spot in the championship game.
"I came in, in the fifth inning," Suker said. "Me and Jen Mineau split the game. I was strong and she was even nastier. It was a very good game, and we made for a good combo."

Adirondack won that game, 3-0, setting up a rematch. In the second game, Long Island prevailed, 2-0.

Suker pitched in the team’s lone loss of the tournament, a 3-2 loss to New York City.

Adirondack did beat Central, 3-0; Western, 6-1; and Hudson Valley, 1-0, to earn a 4-1 record and earn a spot in the gold-medal game.

"Strong all around"
"Gold was our first goal," Suker said, "but silver is definitely just as good. It proves how hard we’ve been working.
"It was a good game and a really good tournament," Suker added. "It was one game and one bad inning. The rest of the games we played really hard. It was really fun. It was a great experience."

Suker was inspired by her sister to try out for the Adirondack team.
"I wasn’t sure at first if was going to try out," she said. "But I tried out and I stuck with it. We were strong all around. All the girls are nice."

Playing at the Empire State Games isn’t the only thing that was new for Suker this past year.

Suker transferred colleges and moved up to a higher level of softball.

Suker started her college career at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell but transferred to Binghamton University before the spring semester.
"It was a rocky first year," Suker said of this past spring. "We have a good coach and we have 11 recruits coming now for the fall. We’re definitely building it up for following years."

Suker, a 2005 graduate of Voorheesville, had thought about transferring for a while, but was looking for the right school.
"I was really nervous," she said. "But there are great people at Binghamton. I became friends with other athletes."

Suker finished the season with a 10-8, record pitching the first and third games of every series. There was one other pitcher on the team.
"We were also a good complement for each other," Suker said. "We worked well together."

At the end of last season, Suker was 29th in the nation in strikeouts. She also set the school record for strikeouts in a season and tied the record for strikeouts in a game.

Suker was excited to play Division I softball after transferring from Division II Lowell. But there were other reasons why Suker made the move.
"Academics were important," she said. "Also the number of pitchers on the team. I talked to the coaches and completely liked them. It felt comfortable. I’m happy again."

Suker is very happy she made the move after spending a year-and-a-half at Umass-Lowell.

Suker plans on staying at Binghamton and continuing to help the softball program get better. She also wants to graduate with a degree in psychology.
"I like to work with kids," Suker said. "I don’t exactly know what I want to do with them, but I’ll figure that out."
Suker is working at Camp Nassau in Guilderland this summer. She is not sure if she will play in the Empire State Games again, though she had a lot of fun this year."
"It depends on if a I get an internship or because of a job or school," Suker said. "The opening ceremonies were so nice. The whole experience is like a mini-Olympics. I’ll always remember it."

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