Softball: Lodico to continue career at Benedictine University

Former Rochelle softball standout Bella Lodico will be continuing her academics and athletics at Benedictine University next year. Lodico played her freshman season at Judson University, leading the Eagles in innings pitched, strikeouts and ERA. (Photo courtesy of Judson University)

Rochelle alum reflects on freshman season at Judson University

Increased strength in the circle enabled former Rochelle student-athlete Bella Lodico to enjoy a solid freshman softball season at Judson University. After leading the Eagles in several pitching statistics, Lodico will make the leap from the NAIA to the NCAA Division III level as she continues her academics and her softball career at Benedictine University in Lisle next year. 

“I chose Benedictine University for many reasons,” Lodico said. “I knew that Benedictine had a successful softball program in the past and I felt welcomed once I met the coaching staff and most of the girls on the team. The school itself is very environmentally friendly and safe as well and it made me feel at home. I’m looking forward to having tougher competition and traveling further away. I feel like the competition will make me a better person and athlete as well.”

Lodico appeared in 16 games with a team-high 13 starts for the Eagles during her freshman season. The left-hander led Judson University with 34 strikeouts and three victories in 78 and two-thirds innings pitched while recording a team-low 4.72 ERA. Lodico, who finished 3-for-13 in limited at-bats, said her goals for next season are to improve her strength and consistency.

“I thought my freshman season went really well,” Lodico said. “My strikeout-to-walk ratio and my ERA improved immensely. I grew stronger during my freshman year, which improved my arm strength and helped me throw nearly 80 innings. I hope to bring positive results with my pitching, my energy and my encouragement to the Benedictine softball team next year. I’m going to work hard in order to earn a spot to play for my future teammates and my family.”

Lodico threw at least seven innings in five of her 13 starts with the Eagles. Lodico, whose wins came against Concordia University Ann Arbor, Penn State DuBois and Trinity International, said she intends to study psychology while minoring in Spanish and social work at Benedictine in order to earn her bachelor’s degree and pursue a future career in the foster care system.