Girls Varsity Softball kicked off their season with hard work and self-motivation. The girls on the team balance their individual gameplay skills while coming together as a team to form a strong bond with each other. With efforts to become better than they started, daily practices take place in order to make the saying “practice makes perfect” a reality.
The girls begin daily practices with subtle warm-ups to get their bodies ready for hardcore drills and games. They begin their warm-up routine with a light jog which then leads them into dynamic stretching, including quad pulls, side lunges, scopes and Frankensteins (a hamstring stretch). Once their muscles are ready for some speedrunning, the team starts increasing sprints from 50%, 75% and all the way to 100%. Once they complete warm-ups, they go right into throwing or hitting.
Junior Madi Link, pitcher for the varsity team, appreciates her team’s energy and the adrenaline that kicks in before every game.
“It helps you play better and become more focused,” said Link.
As important as gameplay skills are, the girls also make sure to keep their mentalities up, which greatly impacts how they play. “I definitely want to improve my mental game. It is one of the hardest parts of being a softball player and takes the longest to achieve. I have continued to work on it for years and I am still trying to improve it,” said Link.
Bobby Pena, the head coach for varsity softball makes it clear to his team that what they do in practice leads to results they want.
“Hard work always pays off, we just do not know how soon it will,” said Pena.
Keeping a good mentality and confidence level allows the team to be more confident in how they play. Pena wants his team to become the best they can be so confidence remains his highest priority.
“We are in the process of training the players for the position they will play,” said Pena.
Along with working as a whole team to better their own game positions, each player sets personal goals for themselves.
“Throughout the season, I want to be the 3-5 hitter for the team, have tons of confidence when I pitch, and always stay on my A-game. I always want to give my 110% because I want to know when I get off the field that I gave it my all.” Link stated. “Finding someone that motivates you and inspires you to grow and work harder is important for how you play. My club coach keeps me playing because he teaches me to be a good person outside of softball while also working hard in practice and real life. He taught me the balance of behavior in and out of game is everything.”
As the season continues, players such as Link hope to play their best while continuing to work on self-confidence, skills and teamwork. Every game offers a chance to become better than before. With improvement, the team plans to put their dedication in making every game and practice something to be proud of.