Renette McCurry got her first feel of sixteen-inch softball around the age of fourteen when she started playing at the Sears parking lot, and a neighborhood playground on Homan Avenue on the West side of Chicago. She played for her my girl scout group Girl Power under the leadership of Corrine Stubbs.
She played fast pitch softball in high school as a third baseman but switched to pitcher as a request of the coach. She didn’t want to switch but did so because the team didn’t have anybody else that could pitch. But much to her surprise to say it ended up being her only and favorite position.
While playing softball in high school, Renette went from playing fast pitch to sixteen-inch softball for Hershel King, a high school softball official who chose girls from different high schools on the Westside of Chicago and formed a sixteen-inch team named The Rockettes. She played for Hershel for about three years. She played against other teams on the West side of Chicago in parks like Douglas, Columbus and Garfield and was approached by her second softball coach, Allen Jenkins. Allen coached a team named the Force. He asked Renette to play for him, so she joined the Force in the late 1980s and played thru the early 2000s.
With the Force, Renette earned her reputation as a true softball player. They played every size softball there was – eleven-inch, twelve-inch, fourteen-inch, sixteen-inch inch and mush ball. It didn’t matter. They played it and played it well. During her tenure with The Force, she joined another sixteen-inch inch team named The Feminiques out of Dunbar Park on the South side of Chicago. She played with them for about two years only to leave them and join another team from Dunbar Park named Mixed Company, under the coaching of Juan Gayden. The Force and Mixed Company sort of became like a combination team, and between the two teams the players competed in various leagues and tournaments.
In the 1990s to the early 2000’s, Renette played for two Co-Ed sixteen – inch teams: the Players under the coach named Smoke from the South side of Chicago and Sloan out of Broadview, IL for coach Derrick Moses.
Renette has earned many awards including MVP honors and all tournament teams in many tournaments throughout Illinois. In 1993, she won MVP with a slugging percentage of .682 hitting, and her team posted a 5 -1 record to win the USSSA Women’s “C” State Championship. In 2002, Renette won Top Defensive Player for the Women’s Sixteen-inch NSA Class World Series while playing for a team named Sloan. They also won a tournament in Blue Island. She especially enjoyed playing in the infamous Old Style Classic Tournaments in Grant Park in the 1990’s.
Renette no longer plays softball but is co-manager for Sloan, a women’s team that plays out of Forest Park. She now enjoys bowling as her other sport. She lives in Bellwood, IL and works for John H. Stroger Hospital in the Finance department where she has been employed for the last thirty years.
Softball Honors Attained by Renette McCurry
1989 Dunbar Park 16 inch Champs Co-MVP
1991 USSSA State Qualifier MVP
1993 Elgin Park USSSA Class C MVP
1995 Division II Champions Sheboygan, WI 25th Annual Stars and Stripes Tournament
1995 Budlight TPS Women’s NIT B Division All-Tournament Team
1999 USSSA 35 and Over State Champions MVP
1999 Metro Louisville USSSA Women’s Budlight TPS/NIT B Division All-Tournament Team.
2001 USSSA All-Tournament Team Rockford, IL
2003 USSSA IL State Tournament Best Defensive Player Rockford, IL
Played NSA, USSSA, ASA and BASA ball