Tracey Alvarez has put a lot of work into her high school softball career, so her selection to the 23rd Annual High School All-Star Classic softball game is just.
The game will be played at 5:45 p.m. on July 11 at San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton.
"Coming from a very young team, you have to definitely work harder," Alvarez said. "Because we're new, people don't expect a lot from a very new team. I think we showed what we can do."
Alvarez batted .342 this season (26-for-76) with a home run, three triples, eight doubles, 21 RBI, 13 runs and six stolen bases. But her team-first attitude is what impressed her coach the most.
"She's a team player," Pacheco coach Charlie Pikas said. "She was comfortable and confident at shortstop (last year), and she realized we had a need at first, and she could fit it. So she stepped up and took the spot."
Alvarez took the position change in stride, sliding to first base while freshman Jasmine Yruegas took over shortstop.
"I've always been all around player," Alvarez said. "The team needs me there, so I have to do the job right and do it well."
Alvarez works on her softball at least three times a week with her parents, coaches Greg and Deborah Alvarez, drilling on all aspects of the game.
"Without him, I wouldn't be good at softball. I wouldn't have the encouragement to do it," Alvarez said. "And she keeps me on my toes. She makes sure I stay in shape. If I don't get a ball, I hear her yell, 'Get dirty!'"
That practice will come in handy, since the all-star teams get one day of practice the day before the game. Alvarez isn't sure what position she will play, but she has confidence in just about any spot on the field.
That the game is at San Joaquin Delta is fortuitous for Alvarez -- the Stockton junior college is one of the ones on her radar. That suggestion came from Pacheco assistant coach Ed Monroe, whose daughter Kelsie pitched for the Mustangs last year before catching on with the NCAA's Bakersfield State.
"This is a huge opportunity, especially coming from such a new program," Alvarez said.
Enterprise reporter David Witte can be reached by phone at 388-6565 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org