Mikolajek looks to get the job done for Cheektowaga Central
"This is it; this is our last year," she said. "We're giving it all we've got. I want that division championship and we can do it. We just have to keep playing strong and keep our focus in practice."
The experienced Warriors are expected by many to be in the thick of things come season’s end. They reached the sectional finals last year and have their heart set on much more this year.
Mikolajek is a big reason for that. A four-year varsity standout, Mikolajek reached a personal milestone when she collected her 100th career hit in an early league showdown against Maryvale. But it was her 101st hit that proved bigger as it drove in Yasmin Harrell for the eventual winning run in a 5-4 victory.
"I didn't even know I was close to it," she said of hit No. 100. "It really shocked me. It's not something I thought I'd get."
Mikolajek had a fine junior season on the mound. She finished 6-4 and with a 1.28 ERA with 42 strikeouts, holding opposing batters to a .190 average. She earned first-team ECIC-III all-star honors for her accomplishments.
"I'm just trying to do the best I can," she said. "I have strong people behind me. I want to strike out as many as I can, but my fielders will have my back."
When she's not pitching, she also plays shortstop for the Warriors. At the plate, she can always be found in the heart of the order.
"She's done a great job for us," Cheektowaga coach Aaron Vanderlip said. "She's pitched well and when she plays in the field, she does a fantastic job wherever we put her."
Mikolajek is also a standout volleyball player for the Warriors. She recorded a team-best 211 kills and 75 blocks and earned fourth-team All-New York State honors – as well as first-team ECIC-III first-team honors for a second straight year.
She helped the Warriors to an ECIC-III championship and the Class B-1 championship Section VI championship game. Mikolajek is hoping for similar in the spring.
“We should be able to go far,” she said. “We all like playing together; we all work well as a team.”