Lemont’s Sage Mardjetko named Gatorade Illinois Softball Player of the Year

2022 IHSA Softball State Champs

For the second time in its history, Lemont High School can lay claim to featuring the state’s best softball player. After enjoying an outstanding season that culminated with her leading her team to a state championship, junior righthanded pitcher Sage Mardjetko has been cited as the 2021-22 Gatorade Illinois Softball Player of the Year. Mardjetko is a finalist for the Gatorade National Softball Player of the Year award, which will be announced this month.

Mardjetko was nearly flawless for head coach Chris Traina’s team in 2022, posting a 21-1 record with a 0.29 ERA and a 0.39 WHIP. Named the 2022 South Suburban Conference-Blue Division Player of the Year and a repeat Illinois Coaches Association Class 3A All-State selection, she reached double figures in strikeouts in 21 of 22 starts, and with 329 strikeouts in 142.2 innings, averaged 16.14 strikeouts per seven innings. She allowed just 25 hits – and no home runs – all season, limiting opponents to a .054 batting average and posting a strikeout-to-walk ratio of 10.6-to-1. She tossed 17 shutouts in 21 starts, with two streaks of six consecutive shutouts. 

Mardjetko threw 11 no-hitters as a junior, which ranks seventh on the IHSA’s single-season list. Included among those gems were a perfect game against Metamora in the IHSA Super-Sectional, and a no-hitter in a victory over St. Ignatius in the IHSA Class 3A State Championship – the first no-hitter in an IHSA softball state title game since 1999.

Though she was outstanding all season, Mardjetko was especially dominant in postseason play, posting a 6-0 record and 0.18 ERA with 84 strikeouts in 38 innings (15.47 per seven innings) while allowing just seven hits. 

Lemont posted a single-season school record for wins in 2022, closing the year with a 34-6 record. It also won its second straight SSC Blue title prior to capturing the program’s first state championship.

Mardjetko’s freshman season was cancelled due to COVID-19, but she made an immediate impression as a sophomore in 2021, posting a 16-2 record with a 0.29 ERA and 259 strikeouts in 123.0 innings (14.74 per seven innings). She helped Lemont to an IHSA Class 3A State Runner-Up finish and earned ICA Class 3A All-State accolades.

Over two seasons, she has a composite 37-3 record with a 0.29 ERA and 588 strikeouts (15.49 per seven innings), helping Lemont to a 63-11 record, two SSC Blue titles, and two trips to the IHSA Class 3A state title game.

The Gatorade Player of the Year program recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field. In addition to her many accomplishments on the softball field, Mardjetko carries a 4.31 grade point average, serves on the school’s Athletic Council, and has earned induction to its chapter of the National Honor Society. One of the nation’s top recruits, Mardjetko has verbally committed to play at the University of South Carolina.

Lemont’s first Gatorade Illinois Softball Player of the Year was pitcher Suzie Rzegocki ‘07 in 2007.

The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls’ volleyball, boys’ and girls’ cross country, boys’ and girls’ basketball, boys’ and girls’ soccer, baseball, softball, and boys’ and girls’ track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which leverages experts including coaches, scouts, media and others as sources to help evaluate and determine the state winners in each sport.

To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate student-athletes, visit playeroftheyear.gatorade.com. For questions concerning the Gatorade Player of the Year, please email
GatoradePOYQuestions@Fleishman.com.