When Lynn Classical’s All-Conference pitcher Tori Adams had to miss a few games due to an injury, coach Erica Richard turned to freshman Brooke Warren for the starting assignments.
Warren, a talented southpaw who had excelled in Little League Softball, delivered in a big way. Warren tossed a perfect game last week, retiring all 15 batters she faced in a 19-0 win over Lynn English in the annual “Coaches Vs. Cancer” game at Grace Rogato Field.
Warren said she was aware that she was working on a perfect game after four innings, though as superstition holds, no one talked about it in the Classical dugout.
“I knew no one had been on base,” said Warren. “Going in to the fifth inning, I was a little nervous because I wanted to keep the perfect game going but I had all the confidence in my teammates behind me.”
In the fifth, Warren went to a 2-0 count on batter Tommy Hill, but an inside pitch resulted in a groundout to second base. Warren then completed the perfect game by striking out the final batter.
Classical coach Erica Richard said Warren’s no-hitter will go in the record books as the first perfect game in school history.
Warren followed up that performance with another gem, pitching all seven innings in a 5-1 victory over Saugus that allowed Classical to clinch a berth in the State Tournament.
Richard said Warren’s emergence as a dependable starter was crucial in the late-season run to the State Tournament.
“When Tori went down with an injury, we hadn’t made the tournament yet, and losing your senior pitcher, who’s thrown almost every inning since the middle of her freshman year, it’s a scary thing – but for Brooke to be a freshman and step up and pitch the way she did, it’s been amazing,” said Richard.
Warren’s emergence is not unexpected. She has been an All-Star pitcher at each level in her career and has worked hard on her pitching under the direction of coach Lauren Ebstein from Tufts University. Warren has also benefited from Richard’s knowledge of pitching and how to gain an edge on hitters. Being on the staff with Tori Adams, an outstanding role model for the younger players on the team, has also helped Brooke advance her skills.
Warren is clearly the next in the line of outstanding pitchers who have taken the mound for Classical, a list of aces that includes Cathy Ellis, Martha Jamieson, Christina Mihos, Jenny Garriry, Katie Cuozzo, Melissa McLaughlin, Mackenzie Coppinger, and Tori Adams.
Brooke is the daughter of former Lynn English Super Bowl quarterback Chris Warren, vice principal at Classical, and Leah (Kalapinski) Warren.