Windham’s Brooke Gerry delivers a pitch during the Class A state championship game against Oxford Hills on June 20. Gerry allowed four hits, struck out 13 and walked one to earn the victory. Ben McCanna/Staff Photographer

Coming off a brilliant sophomore year, Brooke Gerry began her junior season with the Windham High softball team by running into change. New coach. New players. New role and responsibility.

Brooke Gerry

“This season was definitely challenging from the start,” Gerry said. “It was a big adjustment.”

It was an adjustment that the Eagles, and their star lefty, were ultimately able to make. Gerry led Windham to its first Class A title and first state championship since 1995, going 12-0 with a 0.17 ERA and 177 strikeouts in 85 innings while also batting .561 and scoring 34 runs. For her dominant performance, she is our choice as the Varsity Maine Player of the Year in softball.

“The team just came together, working hard toward our one goal, which was winning that state championship,” Gerry said. “We definitely grew as a team, grew as individuals. But we all had that one end goal.”

Gerry made sure it was accomplished. She pitched each of Windham’s playoff games and could barely be touched, striking out 46 in 28 innings while allowing nine hits and one run.

“Brooke is, by far, the best softball player in the state of Maine,” said Nick Caiazzo, a softball director and travel coach at the Edge Academy. “Hands down. She is terrific.”


She had to clear some early obstacles, however. Darcey Gardiner replaced former coach Fred Wilcox, who Gerry called “my rock.” Gerry’s mother, Raquel, wasn’t on the coaching staff this year after being an assistant on each of her daughter’s teams since she was 10.

Gardiner, looking to use talented sophomore pitcher Kennedy Kimball and keep her ace fresh, told Gerry she’d be spending some time at first base – a new position.

“She definitely gave me the eyes, like ‘Coach, are you sure you know what you’re doing here?'” Gardiner said. “But she worked equally as hard at getting down first base as she did pitching. … It really goes to show her character.”

The teams that had to face Gerry saw an overwhelming arsenal of pitches. Her velocity sits at 63-66 mph, but she can throw six pitches – a fastball, changeup, drop ball, screwball, rise ball and curveball – for strikes. Gerry began working with Keilani Ricketts during the coronavirus pandemic, and the former Team USA pitcher has helped her better set up hitters in addition to blowing the ball by them.

“She really helped me change my mindset,” Gerry said. “She showed me that it’s OK to pitch a ball. My changeup doesn’t always have to be a strike. I always thought it had to be.”

Where Gerry hasn’t needed help is with her composure in the circle. On the base paths, Gerry is all energy and smiles. When pitching, however, the smile vanishes.


“I don’t show my emotions on the mound. You can definitely see that in pictures,” she said. “I’m very straight-faced when I’m on the mound. … I (don’t) let other things distract me.”

Don’t confuse that lack of emotion for a lack of intensity.

“When Brooke gives up a walk, I always say ‘Watch out’ to the next batter,” Gardiner said. “She is now in another gear. … It’s like ‘Watch me come back with a fastball that’s got a few more miles per hour behind it.’

“It’s her mentality, her composure and her drive that has really impressed me the most on the mound.”

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