Long Island, and Levittown in particular, is a softball hotbed.
Of Levittown's three high school softball teams - the MacArthur Lady Generals, the Island Trees Lady Dawgs and the Division Blue Dragons - one made it to the Nassau County Championship Series, one came away victorious in the Long Island Championship Game and the other won a Nassau League II Conference 3 title.
That said, not many were surprised that three of the 12 girls selected to Newsday's 2012 All-Long Island softball first team hail from "America's first suburb." One student-athlete from the Levittown-based Island Trees Lady Dawgs also earned a spot on the All-Long Island second team.
MacArthur's Kristen Brown, who graduated in June, earned a spot on the list after notching a ridiculous .583 BAA and blasting 16 homers. The North Carolina-bound shortstop also dazzled in the circle, where she went 9-4 with a 2.85 ERA, helping MacArthur win its first Nassau County title in eight years and first Long Island championship since 1988.
Brown was named by Newsday as Long Island Player of the Year, and by ESPN New York as New York softball player of the year.
Jena Cozza, Brown's teammate on the Lady Generals, was also named to Newsday's list after hitting to the tune of a .419 BAA with five homers and 24 RBIs, while flashing a solid glove at shortstop.
Cozza, who is heading into her senior year, is easily one of the most athletic players to ever walk the halls of MacArthur High School. She plays sports year-round, and shines as a three-sport athlete who dominates on the soccer field, basketball court and batter's box. Cozza helped MacArthur's soccer team earn a New York State title this year, it's first in school history. She also led the Lady Generals basketball squad to a 15-3 record, including a team-high 13 points in a tilt against East Meadow on Feb. 10.
But softball is where she is at her best, as she provides the power in the middle of MacArthur's lineup.
Island Trees pitcher Alannah Basile was also named to Newsday's All-Long Island first team after going 18-3 with a 1.46 ERA in the circle. The star sophomore held opponents to a .145 BAA, and she did some damage of her own at the plate by hitting .375 with five homers and 22 RBIs.
Levittown's Tori Tedeschi, another standout at Island Trees, was named to Newsday's All-Long Island second team after playing a sound third base in her junior year, leading the Lady Dawgs all the way to the Nassau County Championship Series.
Prospects For The 2012-13 Team?
The Levittown Division Lady Dragons didn't have anyone named to Newsday's list this year, but they may very well have some student-athletes make their way there in the 2012-13 season. Senior pitcher Taylor Rosenthal went 11-6 for Division in 2012, so she'll be a key player to watch next year.
Cozza, Basile and Tedeschi are each expected to return to action as well.
Eric Holden has been covering Levittown high school sports since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @ericholden.
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- Long Island