Tuesday, May 6, 2008
I didn’t do as well as I would have hoped for my last weekend out but oh well. To make matters worse I didn’t even play on Saturday. From a selfish point-of-view it kind of upset me because I was realizing that this was my last regular season game ever and the fact that I hadn’t really done well, made me realize that there was no way to turn it around on the last day. From a fellow teammate’s point of view, I understand that it is important to give the other girls that will be playing on Saturday, when we the three seniors head back to walk for graduation, to get some live at bats and live game-time experience before the tournament. People like Beth, LP, and Cait will be playing in positions that they have not been playing all season, so to get some live action is essential, I get that! It just sucks sometimes but then I think back to all the things we as a team have over come in four years to get to this point; lost parents, lost dear friends, pregnancies, drop-outs, quitters, it’s a lot and we’ve come together and over come it all so I just have to once again out my faith in my teammates that we the time comes they will get the job done, period! No questions!, No doubt!, Just belief in them and the talent that they bring to the table.
Moving on: Graduation is coming! Graduation is coming! It’s right around the corner in 6 short days. Oh my gosh how quickly time flies. I know I mentioned it earlier but as the celebrations edge closer it leaves me with mixed emotions. I am super excited to graduate from college, Centenary no less and move forward into what the future holds and I’m super scared because it means I am leaving behind my comfort zone for the 2nd time in my life, the 1st time was coming here to Centenary while everyone I knew went to Texas A&M, UT, or UNT. I guess that anxiousness is elevated because just recently I decided not to go home to Houston, which was the initial plan all along because of Alan, but now go anywhere else. I am also currently seeking employment and somewhere to live. The only thing that I have worked out is that I am going to stay in Shreveport for at least a year to get my feet under me and that I will move into a house with Lyn and Matt (Lyn’s guy). What house? We don’t yet know, but we are seeking a house because they have a dog and it’s growing rapidly and needs a yard to play in. At this point I am just flying by the seat of my pants and everything seems to be up in the air. Its super scary but super exciting too, hence the anxiousness but we’ll see. I’ll try to keep you updated, but until then…
“Live everyday to the fullest because we aren’t guaranteed tomorrow.”
RIP Big Dan
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Let me take you back…here’s how it happened. In the bottom of the 6th the game was tied up and we held them scoreless, so we went into extra innings. It was the bottom of the 8th with 2 outs and Mic gets on by an error, so then it’s my turn. Montgomery calls me over to give an “inspiring speech” (contents unnecessary) and then I step into the batter’s box. The 1st pitch was thrown, outside corner rise ball up at the letters, and I swing. I had a feeling as soon as I hit it that it was gone because I got all of it, I mean if you swung the bat and ever got a hold of the whole thing on the sweetest part of your bat, you know its going the distance; and it did! The funny thing about this moment was that, this season in particular I have become notorious for letting the 1st pitch by, but for some reason it just seemed right.Thank goodness, success. We won that game 6-2 in the bottom of the 8th.
Game two was a smoke out. Western didn’t have a chance, we took the bull by the horns and ran with it scoring 7 runs in the 1st 4 innings while keeping the Westernwinds at 0. They ended up scoring 1 in the 6th with bases loaded, but a stop by pitcher Lauren Highsmith (Smity) and our awesome defense slammed the door to the only momentum Western could muster. J-mar another senior, hit her 1st homerun of the season to be added to the club (the home run club) and on senior weekend no less. It was great it was 1st and 3rd and she jacked it over the left field fence and onto the deck. Good thing none of the deckers were out there otherwise they definitely would have gotten hit. We won the game 7-1 with a thunder and lighting delay in the 7th inning that delayed the game for almost an hour just to play two outs. It was crazy, but once the radars were clear we were allowed to return and cleaned house with the next 3 batters. Good job Smity!
It was looking so promising that Flo would hit a homerun in the last game. I mean, I hit the granny in the 1st game, J hit the 3-run shot in the 2nd game, and since Lyn was out due to surgery and shoulder injury, it just seemed logically. Sadly though it didn’t happen, but we still swept Western Illinois 2-1 in the final game on Saturday. Before the game the four seniors Flo, J, Lyn, and I were presented with gifts from the coaches and girls to commiserate our four/five years here as a Centenary Lady. From the coaches, we received a plaque with an action shot taken at some point in our college career and from the girls we received a collage with loving notes on the back from each girl to us. All and all, it was a perfect day even though I went 0 for 1 with a 1-3 (hit to the pitcher), a walk, and a sac bunt to move runners. I was and still am pretty satisfied with my performance for the weekend, definitely a great way to send our senior year out in style! This Tuesday we play our last home of the season against Northwestern State whom we played last weekend and won 3-1 because freshman Bonnie Matak blasted a 2-run homer. (Bonnie is what I call my little protégé, a story for another day.) This Tuesday we hope to clinch the title of undefeated against all of our in-state rivals (LaTech, Northwestern, Grambling, etc). Until then…
“Live everyday to the fullest because we aren’t guaranteed tomorrow.”
RIP Big Dan
Moving on: Up ‘til about a month ago I was in a long-term, long-distance relationship with my high school sweetheart. I thought he was the one; the relationship that was meant for greatness, but I finally realized that I could’t say that with the utmost certainty anymore. The details are unimportant but it basically boils down to maturity and me figuring out who I am and what I want. So,I’m left thinking if this USED TO BE promising relationship will breathe new life on our time apart or will I move on and realize that even though I love him and he taught me a lot, he is not who I am supposed to be with anymore? I guess, only time will tell.
And finally, let’s talk about my slump. For a while there I was in a batting slump,I couldn't touch anything with my bat, which caused my Ks to rack up and my average to plummet. It seemed as though it would never change, I was destined to suffer and inch further and further down the average poll and sink further and further away from playing any longer, but somehow I recovered. THANK GOD, sheesh!!! Now, I am on the up and up and slowly but surely climbing my way out of the ditch I put myself in. I’ll let y’all know how that goes in the coming weeks. Sorry for not writing,I’ll do better but until then…
“Live everyday to the fullest because you aren’t guaranteed tomorrow.”
RIP Big Dan
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Sorry it has been a while since I have given you the inside scoop of the life of a Centenary student athlete. The last couple of weeks have been busy with tests, tournaments, and starting conference play my teammates and I have been quite busy.
It has been a while since my last blog so let me catch you up. Starting on February 26th up until the UMKC series we played a total of 10 games. We beat Louisiana Tech, whom is our rival, by a close 1-0 ball game. We went 8-10 over the ten game stretch and only lost to Stephen F. Austin and Oklahoma State. The loss to SFA was a tough one because as a team we know we are better, we let a few things that did not go our way ruin our momentum. After a tough weekend in Stillwater, Oklahoma at the OSU tournament we returned home to take a 2-1 win over South Alabama before starting conference play against IUPUI.
We are currently 14-15 on the season, with only more wins in sight. Our team is on fire, defensively, offensively, and our pitching is phenomenal. Hitting is contagious and let’s just say we’ve all caught it. We opened conference with a bang sweeping IUPUI in our three game series taking all three with a combined score of 15-1 on the weekend. We have multiple players whose bats are so hot no one can phase them. Our pitching is smooth and consistent and all three of our pitchers can be used in a combination to throw off any ball club around.
Our team is presently in Kansas City, Missouri waiting to play our three game series with UMKC. Weather always seems to be a factor when it comes to conference play for the Ladies. Our series was moved back a day on a count of a rainy forecast. The series should resume Tuesday when we will play our double header followed by one game on Wednesday.
Well Readers that is all for now. Wish us luck!
Friday, March 21, 2008
SO, since I last wrote I have been cursed with the slump of all slumps. Check out the stats and you’ll see what I am talking about. And above all, my arm has been possessed by something evil and control of a ball is apparently out of the question.
I could blame it on the bird that _ on my head after Baylor’s tournament or the black cat that continuously sits in the middle of my driveway and crosses my path every morning as I leave my house, but I won’t. Obviously, its up to me to dig myself out, obviously I just need to try harder, and obviously I need to be the best player for my team. Be better…what an epiphany!
No but seriously, I am faster than a speeding bullet on the bases lately-no one can throw me out! AND I learned how to keep ALL the books. EXCITING.
-Wish us luck! Say a prayer for me!
Friday, March 14, 2008
-FIGHT FOR AN OPPORTUNITY TO BE IN THE SELECTED 10.
-FIGHT THROUGH BROKEN BONES.
-FIGHT THROUGH SORE ARMS TO FINALLY ACHIEVE A STARTING SPOT THAT I HAVE CRAVED SINCE MY 1ST PRACTICE ON THIS DIVISION I COLLEGE SOFTBALL DIAMOND!
TO ALL THOSE WHO CAME BEFORE AND WILL COME AFTER WE ALL KNOW IT IS A GAME. BUT NOT JUST ANY GAME, IT IS THE GAME THAT WE PUT OUR BLOOD, SWEAT, AND TEARS INTO AND, IF CUT SHORT, ALWAYS LEAVES US WANTING MORE. IT IS THE GAME THAT DEFINES US AS PEOPLE BY NOT ONLY TEACHING US DISCIPLINE AND COMPETITION BUT ALSO HOW TO WORK AS A TEAM AND HAVE PRIDE FOR SOMETHING GREATER THAN OURSELVES.
PEOPLE SAY THAT COLLEGE IS THE BEST FOUR YEARS OF YOUR LIFE AND I WOULD HAVE TO AGREE, FOR THE MOST PART. I DO BELIEVE IT HAS A POTENTIAL FOR GREATNESS BUT ALSO IN THAT SAME LIGHT CAN BE THE SCENE FOR DISAPPOINTMENT AND SORROW. NOT BECAUSE OF THE PROCESS OR EXPERIENCE BUT BECAUSE AT THE END OF IT ALL, WE AS STUDENT ATHLETES YEARN FOR MORE. THIS IS MY YEAR TO BRING ALL MY CARDS TO THE TABLE; THIS IS MY YEAR TO SHINE; AND THIS IS MY YEAR TO LEAVE IT ALL OUT THERE ON THE FIELD, FOR BETTER OR WORSE THIS IS MY SENIOR YEAR!
R. I. P. LADIES R. I. P.
“LIVE EVERYDAY TO THE FULLEST BECAUSE YOU AREN'T GUARANTEED TOMORROW!”- Daniel Perez (RIP 08.20.07)
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Welcome back softball fans! Over the last week, we have been continuing to build on our success. Coming off of several needed wins, we hosted Grambling State last week in a double header. It was only the second time we have seen our home field since the start of the season.
We extended our winning streak to six wins after taking both games from Grambling. In game one of the double header, we were able to use hot hitting and dominating pitching to win 10-0 in five innings. Sophomore Allison Shepperd led the way at the plate with a 2-for-2 effort, scoring three runs, and driving in two. Senior Amy Wiedeman also belted a three run shot over the left field fence that powered our second inning offensive explosion.
A new face was in the lineup for the first time in a month. Junior Emerald Doria was able to cleat up after suffering an injury and she proved to be a force that was missing. On her first hit of the season, she was able to jog around the bases after delivering a huge three run shot over the outfield fence. It is nice to see her back in action.
Freshman Lauren Highsmith collected her first win of the season. She was able to remain composed and pitch a shutout for us giving up just two hits, five walks, and striking out seven in just five innings.
In game two, we seemed to come out a little slower than the first game, not scoring until the fourth inning. Though in the end, we came away with a victory heading into our tournament at Oklahoma State.
Sophomore Stacy Whitmer pitched a gem striking out ten batters and allowing only three hits in seven innings of work.
We ended last Wednesday night with two big wins heading into the weekend where we faced SFA, Texas Wesleyan, and Oklahoma State.
Our sleeper bus pulled out heading to Stillwater, Oklahoma on Thursday leaving behind some beautiful weather. But not more than an hour after leaving Shreveport, we come across a wintry mix of weather. After stopping for dinner on the way, we were in for a long trip—secluded in our tiny bunk beds listening to music, working on papers, and watching movies.
We arrived in Stillwater around 1 a.m. and went straight to bed for an early wake up in below freezing temperatures. Games were scheduled at 12 p.m. and 2 p.m., but were cancelled due to the frigid weather. As a team, we went to a movie and to a nice dinner to occupy our time. Saturday morning came and we played the first two games at 11 a.m. against SFA and 1 p.m. against Texas Wesleyan.
The temperatures were chilly, but playable. Against SFA, we seemed to not have what it took to beat a much-improved Lady Jack team. We came out a little complacent and not with the drive and power knowing we were riding a six game win streak at that time. The score didn’t represent who we are losing 8-0. Our lack of clutch hitting accounted for eight base runners left on base. Emerald was able to continue her hot hitting with a 3-for-3 performance at the plate, but in the end we couldn’t find a way to score a run.
In the second game against Texas Wesleyan, we were able to come out and regain a sense of who we are at the plate and on the field. We connected on 11 hits as a team and fought to put up 11 runs.
After day one, we were treated to dinner at Eskimo Joes, Stillwater’s famous restaurant. On Sunday, the final day of the tournament, we faced host Oklahoma State for the third time this season. After two disturbing opening season losses to the Cowgirls, we felt a need for revenge. In the end, the scoreboard left the Cowgirls on top 5-1, but we played well in all aspects of the game.
We scored first in the second inning after sophomore Haley Bassett led off with a single and was moved to third on two consecutive grounders. Amy then delivered a sharp hit ball down right the field line scoring Haley to put us ahead.
Oklahoma State was able to take a few key plays and delivered a few runs off of sophomore starter Ryan Thacker. She held the Cowgirls until about the fifth inning when they had a few lucky breaks and scored two runs.
In the final game of the tournament for a third place finish, we faced Texas Wesleyan once again. This time, we weren’t shy to put a few runs on the board early as we plated seven runs in the first inning off of key hits and sacrifice groundouts and fly balls.
Stacy took control on the mound not allowing a run until the fifth inning. Because of our long trip home to Shreveport and this game not beginning until 4 p.m., we were determined to find a way to end it early and that we did. With two outs in the bottom of the fifth inning, junior Leslie Postles singled and was driven in off a triple by senior Jennifer Martin. JMar scored off of a game ending single up the middle off the bat of freshman Caitlin Cavarra.
Overall, this weekend ended on a better note than it started. We survived the long trek home and rolled into Shreveport at around 2 a.m. to find ourselves in classes bright and early that morning.
We host South Alabama at home on Wednesday before entering Summit League play this weekend at home as well. IUPUI comes to our home field for the opening of the most anticipated part of our season. Play will begin on Friday with a double-header beginning at 4 p.m. and a single game on Saturday at 12 p.m.
Come out and cheer us on to victory! See you next week!
“I come to play everyday.” –David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox
For the love of the game,
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Anyway to explain my earlier comment about being pretty accident prone, let’s start by counting the injuries. By the way something to note, everything that happens to me seems to happen on my left side. I’ll show you! As a freshman, I came in with a broken wrist from playing softball for my summer traveling team. I received two pins in my left wrist, which left a little indention scar. Then last year while participating in the 6 am morning workout, I broke my left foot. We had to do an exercise called split-box jumps on an aerobics step up pallet that was about 6 or so tiers high. I was never very good at them, so being as accident prone as I am, I knew it was just a matter of time ‘til something bad happened. I never imagined though that I would come down wrong and break the outside bone of my left foot; this resulted in a 3-inch screw permanently placed in my foot. Talk about a fun experience every time I travel on an airplane; it almost always goes off. Looking at the x-rays, the screw look likes a sheetrock screw with one significant exception, the screw in my foot is worth about $400 and the other maybe $0.40 if you’re lucky, probably not even that much though. Here’s another example: as the fall was ending this past year I started to get a little bit of tendonitis in my shoulder. Coach Angus jokingly commented “well if that’s the most that’s going to happen this year then we’re lucky.” So the fact-of-the-matter is I am very accident prone. You can ask any of my teammates and they all have little stories they could probably tell you to give you a better idea. You know what I mean, when the story starts off “remember that one time Weady…” I have a feeling it’s going to be about something that happened to me but also probably pretty funny. I’ll tell you about the day we were videotaping our swings during a live pitching day at another time but until then “live everyday to the fullest because you aren’t guaranteed tomorrow”; a very wise quote from a very dear friend.
R.I.P. Big Dan (DP)
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
With only three days left to recuperate from our first tournament in Texarkana, we packed our bags for Waco, Texas for yet, another challenging weekend of softball. Headed to Baylor University for their annual Getterman Classic against Syracuse, Purdue, and #7 Baylor, we had high expectations as a team.
We left Shreveport Thursday afternoon around 5:30 p.m. and arrived in Waco close to 11 p.m. that evening. With a long day ahead of us at the ballpark on Friday, we unpacked and went straight to bed.
Friday morning rolled around and we played the opening games of the tournament facing Syracuse from the Big East and Purdue of the Big Ten. Not knowing much about each of these teams, we went into the game against Syracuse with an idea of playing “our game” and nothing else.
Our focus heading into this tournament was improving our overall approach at the plate. In our opening tournament, we seemed to struggle with aggressive at-bats and trusting our strengths at the plate. Practicing several days on hitting last week paid off. Each player went to the plate with a better understanding of what they can do to have a better at-bat. We worked on being aggressive early and swinging at close pitches—putting the ball in play.
Trying to find the momentum to win the first game of our season was what made for a much more exciting tournament. We played well in the opening game against Syracuse putting up five hits and drawing nine walks. Sophomore Haley Bassett provided a spark at the plate going 2-for-2 knocking in two runs. Sophomore Ryan Thacker (also my roommate) picked up her first win of the season throwing six full innings, giving up just five hits, while striking out three. It was an impressive outing on all counts, defensively and offensively.
Against Purdue in the second game on Friday, we put up again, a solid hitting performance with seven hits against the Boilermakers, though it wasn’t enough in the end as they manufactured runs on three errors. Senior outfielder Amy Wiedeman hit her first homerun of the season in a 2-for-4 effort, scoring a run, and driving in three in the 8-7 loss.
We have had to overcome quite some adversity as junior shortstop Emerald Doria has been out with an injury, along with some other minor aches and pains to other players. This adversity has made us work hard to fight through change and realize a little unluckiness early will, in the end, only make us stronger.
After Friday’s games, more than half of the team iced up before heading back to the hotel to relax. We were treated with a nice dinner just before we were locked into our rooms studying for the rest of the night. An early wakeup call came on Saturday, leaving us questioning whether we would play or not. The forecast called for 100% rain and cold. Well, we woke up to see no rain, but because of the large amount of rain that came the night before our game was backed up two hours.
10 a.m. rolled around and we packed up and were off to Getterman Stadium to play Syracuse at 12 p.m. and Baylor later in the day at 5:30 p.m. An inning was played against the blue and orange from New York, but nothing else, as the tarp crew were off and on, off and on for an inning protecting the beautiful Baylor infield.
I have to admit though, it was quite impressive to watch how quickly these seven men rushed onto the field and were able to tarp in literally a matter of minutes. All I can picture is our entire team of sixteen slaving over the same chore that seven men were able to accomplish.
After several indecisive decisions, the call was made to cancel the day in hopes of protecting the field for play on Sunday. So, as usual, we packed up our bags and piled in our vans. We ate lunch and then were able to spend quality time with our parents if they were in town.
Since most of our team is from Texas, many families were able to make the trip to Baylor including my mom and aunt, who I haven’t seen since Christmas. It was a nice treat to spend the day with each of them, as I know many of my teammates felt the same way.
A team meeting was called Saturday evening before heading to bed for a good night sleep as we prepared for Sunday’s games against Purdue and #7 Baylor of the Big 12. Sunday morning came and we checked out of the hotel, ate breakfast, and arrived at Baylor for a beautiful day of softball.
In the opening game against Purdue, not much seemed to go our way. We struggled to put up hits and put runners on base, finishing with only two hits on the game to Purdue’s ten. As a team, we also make four errors that provided Purdue with many base runners resulting in an 8-0 loss for us.
It was uncharacteristic of us to hand over runs by errors, but Purdue’s foot speed challenged many of our plays causing us to rush throws and not finish plays that are normally our strength. We had to understand that in order to succeed, we must never rush. Being quick is our specialty—so we must always remember to “be quick and not hurry.”
After Purdue’s game, we changed our mindsets and came into the game against Baylor (also the #7 team in the country and a 2007 World Series participant) with a better understanding of what we are there to do. With that, we were able to put up an astounding eight hits against Baylor pitching while stranding seven base runners over the course of the game. On a positive note, we each had great at-bats and were able to contribute something to the game and in the end that will be the key to winning games in the Summit League this season.
Senior Lauren Flowers was able to break through with a great hit over right center wall for her first homerun of the season giving us two runs to Baylor’s four. Sophomore Allison Shepperd went 3-for-3, which included a double off of the center field wall against Baylor. Even though the game ended in another loss for us on the season, we all feel it ended pretty positive. Ryan pitched another great game for us holding the Baylor Bears to only four runs and defensively, there were no errors committed.
Sophomores Haley Bassett and Allison Shepperd were named to Baylor’s all-tournament team on their excellent performances the entire weekend. So, congrats to them—well deserved!
So, as our record is still not where we want it to be, at 1-9, we are working hard to build on the positives of each game. We had many exciting moments this past weekend, though at the same time, we still need to recognize that overcoming adversity early will only make us much stronger once conference starts.
We play this Wednesday against Louisiana Tech in Ruston starting at 5 p.m.
This weekend we head to the University of Houston to play host, UH, Texas State, Kansas, Boston, and Cal State-Northridge beginning on Friday.
It’s been fun. See you next week. Go Ladies!
“I come to play everyday.” –David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox
For the love of the game,
This weekend we had some issues with the weather but managed to get at least four more games under our belts. We ended the weekend 1-3, our win being Syracuse, two of our losses going to Purdue, and the last to Baylor University. We went out with a bang if I must say so myself. We gave Baylor a run for their money the entire game, never giving up. Baylor came out to perform in front of a very supportive home crowd ready to take home another win. We took the loss 4-2 but made them earn every at bat, every base, and every run they received.
Following the conclusion of our game vs. Baylor the All-Tournament team was announced to the crowd; Haley Bassett and I were honored along with a selected few from the other three teams who competed in the tournament.
Our team played under some un-favoring conditions, but we managed to pull through and accomplish something as a team. As a team we were told by Coach Dan Morman “To trust that the person next to you will do their job so that you can concentrate on doing your own.” This seemed to come out in the Baylor game. Once everyone was trusting in one another you could feel all the tension leave and we could play our game again. We gave Baylor the #8 team in the nation a heck of a game, and I believe if we had a few more innings the results may have been different. We may be starting off with a few more losses than anyone would have hoped for, but the experiences that come along with them are more valuable than any W.
We’re getting better ever outing and we have twice as many games this week. We go to Ruston, Louisiana on Wednesday, February 20th to play Louisiana Tech, and Thursday we leave for Houston, Texas to play; Texas State, Kansas, Cal-State Northridge, Houston, and Boston. Wish us luck!
Monday, February 18, 2008
We opened our season last weekend in Texarkana, Arkansas, not exactly the start every team dreams about. We battled hard all weekend, against OSU, UAB, and the University of Arkansas, and came up short every time. Although we ended the weekend with a 0-6 record we did achieve some pretty neat things as individuals and as a team. We had multiple homeruns and everyone was pulling their weight. We struggled with our pitching here and there but nothing a little practice in the bullpens won’t fix.
Now we’re in Waco, Texas at the beautiful Baylor University campus. We played Syracuse this morning and took the 4-3 win. We took that momentum into our next game against Purdue and gave them a run for their money finishing at a close loss of 8-7. Tomorrow we should be continuing with the tournament but it looks like Mother Nature might have other plans in store. The forecast is almost 100% chance of rain, and below 40 degrees, which is not exactly prime softball weather.
So, tomorrow’s potential games are Syracuse at 10:00 A.M. and Baylor at 5:30 P.M. Wish us luck!
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
As this is my first time “blogging,” I am unsure on how to address my blog’s reader demographic, or for that matter, how to start what is sure to be the best blog in Centenary Softball history.
If you do not know who I am already my name is Lyn Virdell and I am yes, FINALLY a senior this year for the Ladies softball team. You can readily find me at 2nd base or at the local Starbucks unwinding with one of the other senior players. I am like many athletes an Exercise Science major, but unlike most I spent my first 3 years in Mickle Hall (the Biology department) slaving away in hopes of a medical career. I am now very happy to state that I have found my calling in the area of pharmaceuticals and will be drug repping in Tulsa as soon as I leave my college years behind be.
Enough about “ME” lets talk about “WE,” Which seems to be the theme of our 2008 season. “Don’t be a ME person, be a WE person,” which in Laymen’s terms means don’t play selfish, and do what’s best for the team…etc. As a whole, it has had a great impact on the team. I may also one day decide to apply it to other areas of my life…
In further news, we have just finished up the first tournament of the year in Texarkana…I suggest if you want the results you just turn to ol’ gocentenary.com, because this informer is completely biased on the weekend. Now, as far as this coming weekend goes, we head off to start a new in Waco, Texas. You know what that means…Glen Moore. For those of you who haven’t seen or heard of him I strongly suggest Googling and it will explain itself. Oh, and the games…I’m always up for a good challenge.
Hugs and homeruns,
My name is Allison McClain and I’m a member of the Centenary Softball team. You can find me somewhere in the infield as a utility player or just look for #8 on the back of my jersey. I am Communication-Professional Writing major with a minor in German. I hope to work in Media Relations or Community Development for a professional sports team one day. I am here all season, along with several of my teammates, to provide you with the inside scoop on Centenary softball. Go Ladies!
I personally find the game of softball to be similar to that of a rollercoaster ride—we have our up moments and our down moments mixed in with a little exhilarating excitement along with a little bit of nervousness as we venture to the top or play our first games of the season.
We loaded the bus for Texarkana last Friday at noon to play Oklahoma State in the opening games of the season. When we arrived in Texarkana, Arkansas, I think the realization of beginning the season had finally sunk in. Suited up in our new warm up tops and uniforms, we walked off the bus ready to play.
As the double header against the Cowgirls from Stillwater went on, we continued to fight. Their bats came alive when our bats didn’t. We seemed to struggle manufacturing runs leaving sixteen batters on base over the course of the two games. Some of the exhilarating moments that brought life to the game as we escaped the lights of the scoreboard were homeruns by freshman Bonnie Matak and senior Lyn Virdell.
After about six hours at the ballpark on Friday evening, we headed to dinner late that night at Apple Bee’s. We were exhausted from the wind and cool breeze, but were much luckier to have a beautiful day without rain. At dinner, we celebrated the birthday of Coach Angus. Leaving the restaurant a little after midnight, we checked into our hotel and fell asleep immediately for a 7:00 am wake up call.
Saturday morning awaited us as we grabbed a quick breakfast and loaded the bus for the double header against University of Alabama-Birmingham at 10 a.m. We arrived in uniform for warm ups and pre-game. Game time came and we proved that we could rise up from the down moment of Friday’s games and play hard. Even though we didn’t come away with a win on Saturday against the Blazers, we had impressive pitching performances from Stacy, Lauren, and Ryan who kept us in the ball game, but once again our bats seem to struggle at the plate as we couldn’t find a way to score a run.
We played the first two games of the day, so we ended up having the rest of the day to relax and catch up on some much needed sleep. Our team left the ballpark, headed to Olive Garden for a late lunch, and then back to the hotel to chill for the rest of the evening. Some players were able to spend time with family members who drove miles to visit their daughters and other players were able to work on homework, watch television, and do each other’s hair for Sunday’s games (haha thanks Lauren).
Though the sleep was much needed, a win was needed more. We were able to sleep in on Sunday, grab a quick bite to eat, and arrive at the ballpark to face the University of Arkansas. It seemed to be a bit of a rival as we faced them my freshman year taking a game from the SEC Lady Backs. But this year, things just didn’t seem to go our way from the beginning. We were faced with adversity from the opening pitch of the double header, but as always we fought and fought coming up short.
Sophomore Allison Shepperd was able to provide a little spark with her first homerun of the season, but it just wasn’t enough as we continued to battle. Though our weekend ended in six losses, we learned a lot about ourselves and our team in each one of the games.
Great things came about in each game, but more and more things need improvement. We encountered injuries that set us back a little, but as we prepare for this coming weekend at Baylor, we hope to work through the adversity and find a way to win some games.
As a student-athlete at Centenary College, I find it interesting to pull up at the ballparks where big-time SEC and Big 12 schools sit and await. We walk up in maroon and white with a sense of pride knowing we are just as competitive as they are. Yeah, we might not have a stacked team of twenty or so girls, but we have the same idea about winning and playing softball as any of them do. It just means much more when we can come away with a win.
Even though this weekend didn’t go as we planned, we, as members of the Centenary softball team, feel that a true athlete can only show their fight and will to win when they are put up against the best and still finds ways to have those exhilarating moments that are so much fun to talk about. We had a few this weekend, but are looking for much more.
Coach Montgomery always says, “It’s not about the product right now, it’s about the process…” and with that said, we go into this coming weekend with more of an understanding of who we are as a team and not who we think we should be. Our team can only do what we do. Nothing else.
So, we head off to Baylor University on Thursday to play Syracuse at 10 a.m and Purdue at 12:30 p.m. on Friday, Syracuse at 10 a.m. and Baylor at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, and Purdue at 1 p.m. and Baylor at 3 p.m. on Sunday.
Wish us luck as we prepare for an exiting weekend!
“I come to play everyday.” –David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox
For the love of the game,
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Our quote for this season:"It's not about getting a scholarship, getting drafted, or making Sports Center. It's a deep need in us that comes from the heart. We need to practice, play, to lift, to hustle, to sweat, to compete. We do it all for our teammates. We don't lift weights with a future Olympic wrestler; we lift with a future doctor. We don't run with a future Wimbledon champion; we run with a future CEO. It's a bigger part of us than our friends and family can understand. Sometimes we play for 200,000 fans, sometimes for 25. But we still play hard. You cheer for us because you know us. You know more than just our names. Like all of you, we are still students first. We don't sign autographs for money. But we do sign graduate school applications, MCAT exams, and student body petitions. When we miss a kick, or strike out, we don't let down an entire state. We only let down our teammates, coaches, and fans. But the hurt in our hearts is the same. We train hard. Lift, throw, run, kick, shoot, dribble, and lift some more, and in the morning we go to class. Still the next day in class we are nothing more than students. It's about pride; in ourselves, in our school. It's about our love and passion for the game. And when it's all over; when we walk off that court or field for the last time, our hearts crumble. Those tears are real. But deep down inside, we are very proud of ourselves. We will forever be what few can claim: college athletes."