Not a day goes by without me thinking of getting out on the field! It all began like this:
My dad (baseball fan) said to my sister Nicole and me we should take up a sport that would allow us to get outside, exercise, and meet other people. My mom suggested dancing. My dad said,“Oh no!” then took us out to the softball field across the street from our house in Oakland, California. We were 7 and 9 years old but dad got us a glove and a bat. We did really well and took a lot of grounders… My dad even lined us up against the fence with helmets on and hit hot shots to us. Anyway, after about a year, I asked my dad if I could try to pitch the ball. He said it would be a waste of our time, but after practice he’d let me try it. Well I did and was really excited.
My dad got us involved in the Oakland Girls Softball League. I started on the 10u team and it was fun. I also went on to play travel ball for the 12u Vipers where we won a tournament in Stockton CA. This was the team where I learned patience. The next year I asked my dad if I could “play up” rather than go to 14u, he said to go ahead and try out. I made the team as the starting pitcher of the 16u Lady Athletics. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vY7zv6d7gnI That team worked very hard and the head coach was a former JUCO coach. There I learned discipline.
I started Holy Names High School (Blue Ribbon School of Excellence) and had a great freshman season. Being named First Team All League as a freshman pitcher was my reward. We also went to the NCS Championships for the first time in nine years. This team taught me resilience.
I was recruited back over to my Vipers team the following summer to be the starting pitcher for 16u. We had a good year, but somehow I knew that it was time to really step up.
Sophomore year was even better, I ended up lowering my ERA and led the league in strikeouts with 140. Ultimately, I earned Second Team All League. We earned another trip to the NCS Championships and this time went to the semi-finals.
That summer it was time to step up my game, so I tried out for the Nor Cal Young Guns 18 Gold, and I made the team! We won three tournaments and ultimately won the USSSA California State Championships. We even ended up ranked fourth in the nation!
My sister Nikki earned a softball scholarship to South Carolina State University. Go Nikki!
By the way, I also accepted a scholarship to Alabama A&M University! Living the dream…