Bay Ridge

Fontbonne catcher takes diamond skills to college

January 28, 2022 Jim Dolan
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“I’m going to do something that I always wanted,” said Fontbonne’s varsity senior softball catcher Bella Wren before she signed her college letter of intent for a scholarship to play for Manhattanville College in Purchase, N.Y. “As early as I can remember from playing tee-ball, I’ve always had a bat in my hand and now it’s paid off.” 

Softball has always been an all-consuming passion for Wren. Starting at St. Columba’s CYO grade school team and advancing to the Empire Fast Pitch high school travel team, she says there’s never really been an off-season for her. In addition to her personal weekend workouts at a local tennis bubble, she also conducts softball clinics for U10 travel teams.

“Sports are in my family’s blood,” said the Marine Park resident. “My father played centerfielder for Kingsborough Community College and my mother played high school softball for Commack South.”  

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Recalling Wren’s first two seasons at Fontbonne, JV Coach Ari Dillon said, “Bella is the type of player that gives 100 percent effort 100 percent of the time. She’s so hard-working, always looking for the opportunity to practice and get better. She’s a great teammate and always ready to pick her teammates up and to celebrate them.”

Varsity Coach Frank Marinello said Manhattanville is lucky to get her.

“She a game-changer, offensively and defensively,” he said. “Bella leads by her performance. She comes from a long line of Fontbonne catchers that have taken their talents to college. She’s a great kid and a special talent.”

Wren visited Manhattanville’s small Westchester campus for the weekend and said the school was a perfect match for her in terms of size and distance from home. Meeting the coach and her future teammates sealed the deal.

“I had to be certain that my teammates were serious about softball and were girls that I could get along with for the next four years,” she said.

On track to graduate Fontbonne with a 3.8 GPA, Wren plans to enroll in Manhattanville’s criminal justice program.

“After getting accolades from opposing coaches after games over the years, I gained the perspective that I could capitalize on my softball skills for college,” she said. “I realize that playing on Fontbonne’s varsity is at the next level that has prepared me for college.” 

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