11 NCAA Div. III national team championships
(What you won't find on Facebook...even if you are approved as a friend)
Hometown: Boone, Iowa
High School: Boone
I chose Central College because of the feel. My hometown (Boone) is about the same size as Pella and I wanted to have the same type of community setting as I did back home. Also, a big reason I even looked at Central was because of the great rapport the softball team had. I played for a pretty competitive program throughout high school and knew that Central softball would only advance my career.
You are majoring in Health and Exercise Science because…
I have always had the dream of becoming a physical therapist. When I was about 10 years old, I suffered a very serious and possibly career-ending injury that required me to go through intensive physical therapy. My experiences through rehab made me realize how amazing and rewarding this career would be. From then on I always knew that my career path would be towards physical therapy. Fortunately, I will get to continue on towards my dream of becoming a PT by going to Des Moines University to earn my doctorate degree starting in the fall.
Who is your favorite professor?
My favorite professor at Central is Katelin Gannon. Even though I only had one class with her, she made each and every class extremely important and gave lots of guidance. I also got to work with her on the Student Athlete Advisory Committee, where she really tries to connect all student-athletes with the student body and community as a whole. Plus she has great style in the classroom. :)
What is your favorite Central College memory?
My favorite memory at Central was the regional final game last year versus St. Thomas. Holding the hands of my teammates and watching Paige (Heesch) catch the final out to go to the national tournament gave me goosebumps. It feels like just yesterday that I was crying on the field hugging my teammates as we finally made it to the next step of our journey towards a National Championship.
What do you love most about being a member of the Central Dutch softball team?
I could go on for days about this…what I love most, though, is that there is a collective understanding amongst every player of our overall goals. Everyone believes in their hearts that we will be National Champions and that is what makes us so competitive. It’s not how much talent you have or how long you practice, but how much you actually “get it.”
When you first arrived at Central you started “slap hitting;” scary or exciting?
I started slapping because I was flat out not good enough to compete on the right side. I have speed and can learn pretty quickly, so Coach O’Brien thought I would adapt well on the left side. It wasn’t scary, just different really. After freshman year, it just felt natural to be on the left side. I love it now!
Sometimes after outs in softball, players do fun, secret signals to each other; what is one of your secret signals and who is it to?
Hmmm…my favorite signal this year is with Kaitlyn Matzen. We both LOVE the show Dexter, so we like to do what Dexter does in every episode. If you don’t watch the show, then you wouldn’t get it.
What is one thing people do not know about head coach George Wares?
Most people know Coach Wares has led a lot of teams to winning seasons, but Coach Wares is actually the winningest coach in DIII history and is only five wins away from 1,000 (as of April 4).
What is the best chant you have ever heard from a softball dugout?
“IT’S CENTRAL RALLY TIME!!!” That cheer can get anyone pumped up!
Who is your favorite softball player of all-time?
Caitlin Lowe, center fielder for University of Arizona. She was an amazing slapper and I loved watching her in the Olympics.
Which player on the Dutch softball team would be most likely to get a hit off of Jennie Finch?
Mallory Schulenberg because she batted 4th in her high school lineup or Brie Haycraft because she can lay down a mean bunt.
What is the best song on your pregame playlist?
“Ice Ice Baby” by Vanilla Ice. I know every word and for some reason it relaxes me.
What is your favorite activity to do in your free time?
What’s free time? Outside of softball and working out, I really enjoy watching TV show marathons, playing tennis and just relaxing with friends and family.
Who is one person, past or present, that you’d like to have lunch with?
Jennifer Lawrence because she seems really down to earth and our personalities would get along. And she’s Katniss Everdeen…duh.
This season I hope that…
We bring home the 2014 National Championship.
Bucket list (list items that you want to do/accomplish in your life)
Win a National Championship
Rob a home run
Travel to Europe and Australia
Too many more to list, but will eventually be accomplished!
See previous close-ups.