Natalie Sanchez lets play speak for Aurora Central Catholic. ‘The next time she talks will be one of the first times.’

Quiet doesn’t even begin to describe senior Natalie Sanchez, but the fourth-year varsity player has grown into a rock-solid fixture at second base for Aurora Central Catholic.

In the process, she’s checking boxes off her list.

Coach Mark Pasqualini appreciates the contributions of his Wisconsin Lutheran commit.

“The next time she talks will be one of the first times I’ve heard her talk,” Pasqualini said with a chuckle. “She’s very quiet, but she’s just steady. She makes plays and is very good on defense.

“On offense over the years, she has gotten better and better and picked her batting average up about 60-70 points. Thankfully so. We needed her.”

The Chargers needed her again Tuesday afternoon. Along with left fielder Amelia Lohrey, Sanchez was one of two senior day honorees before a 2-0 nonconference victory over visiting Geneva.

There weren’t many fireworks, however, as junior left-hander Charlotte Brummel prevailed in a pitching duel. She struck out a season-high 13 and scattered three walks for ACC (22-5).

Senior righty Elise Strohm, a Grinnell recruit, countered with a strong effort for Geneva (5-17).

Brummel (5-2) ended up pitching a three-hit shutout, giving up a pair of doubles to senior first baseman Reagan Krohe and a single to junior shortstop Kaitlyn Sprague.

“That was her best game of the season, and she’s had several good ones,” Pasqualini said of Brummel. “She’s just one of those girls, when she’s on, she’s really tough to hit. Her ball disappears on the outside edge.

“When her location is on, she can just blank people. She’s tough to hit. Super athletic and strong. She has a little extra spin on her ball and tails a little differently from what hitters are used to from right-handers.”

Freshman outfielder Abby Gambro broke a scoreless tie in the fifth inning with an RBI triple. Her older sister Kate, a junior third baseman, followed with a sacrifice fly for an insurance run.

Junior catcher Sophia Delgado had a pair of doubles to lead ACC’s five-hit attack.

Sanchez, meanwhile, had a quiet day in the field until smoothly handling her only chance on a ball hit up the middle that she flipped to sophomore shortstop Morgan Vaghy for a force out.

“I like playing second because there’s so much ground you have to cover,” Sanchez said.

She committed to the sport early in a travel softball career that’s reached 10 years. She credited workouts with her father, George, at a field near their Aurora home with improving her defense.

“I was really scared as a freshman,” Sanchez said. “But I was able to adjust and grow through the years.”

A high honor student with an exceptional work ethic, Sanchez is hitting .353 this spring with four doubles, two triples, one home run and 14 RBIs.

At Wisconsin Lutheran, located in the Milwaukee suburb of Wauwatosa, Sanchez will be the first in her family to go away to college. She will play in a Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference that includes Aurora University.

For several years, she has helped with the family cleaning business operated by her dad and mother Carina after practices and games several days a week.

“Sometimes, I didn’t really want to go after games, but I really want to help my parents,” said Natalie, who has two older brothers, a younger brother and a younger sister.

Coming in as a pitcher/infielder, Sanchez earned a starting role at second and third base about three-fourths of the way into her freshman season, according to Pasqualini.

The 5-foot-2 Sanchez gave up pitching after that first high school season because didn’t think she would do that in college.

“She’s outstanding and a great person to have on the team,” Pasqualini said. “She works hard. You never have any problems with a player like that.”