The Dutch softball family connects in Tucson

Saturday, March 22nd, 2014 | No Comments

The Central softball team did more than play 16 games in Tucson--they got to see the city as well.

The Central softball team did more than play 16 games in Tucson–they got to see the city as well.

by Brie Haycraft
Senior, pitcher
Eldridge, Iowa

As the delicious Mexican food settles in our tummies tonight, there is no doubt in my mind that the Central Softball family is absolutely unlike any other. Not that it has taken me four years to figure this out, but I am reminded yet again after an eventful, fun-filled dinner with our parents and fans at Las Fuentes. The Dutch celebrated two more wins today with a tasty buffet, sombreros, a Conga line, tons of smiles, and obviously great company.

It's not often that the Central coaches are caught off guard--but the seniors pulled off this surprise photo.

It’s not often that the Central coaches are caught off guard–but the seniors pulled off this surprise photo.

The highlight of the night (especially for the seniors) was the ambush on the coaching staff. My dad cleverly suggested that it would be pretty epic to snap a photo of the coaches wearing the elaborate Mexican sombreros—but we all knew this would be no small task to accomplish. Lexi and I brainstormed various tactics during dinner, and eventually came up with a foolproof plan: Us seniors would put on the sombreros first, snap a few pics, dance around a bit, and end up surrounding the coaches for the perfect seniors-plus-coaches photo op. Then, as my dad counted down to snap the picture, on “three” the six of us simultaneously (and flawlessly) transferred the sombreros from our own heads to the coaches’—with perfect timing to capture their reactions on film. SUCCESS!! It was a proud moment for the senior class, and everyone shared quite a few laughs over our expertly executed plan.

Another classic moment was when Coach Grimes sought revenge on Chelsea for having to be the “birthday boy” at Texas Roadhouse a few nights ago. Since the whole team threw Chelsea under the bus as the one who told our waitress that Coach Grimes needed to celebrate on the saddle, sneaky Coach Grimes had it out for poor Nugget. Forcing Chels to dance around on stage with the performer (along with Felicia’s dad, the REAL birthday boy) to the Mexican ‘Happy Birthday’ song was the perfect way for Coach Grimes to get even. The enormous smile on his face was priceless, and we were all impressed at his clever retaliation.

It's all about family for the Central softball team, enjoying an evening after two more  victories.

It’s all about family for the Central softball team, enjoying an evening after two more victories.

Overall, tonight was by far the most fun we’ve had at our annual spring trip parent dinner. As we all gather together, it is incredibly obvious to any observer that this group shares something that goes way beyond the game of softball. The Central softball family is truly unlike any other, and I am beyond thankful that the love, support, and relationships we share will endure long after the games come to an end. Go Dutch!

Geckos love the desert–and freshmen

Friday, March 21st, 2014 | No Comments

This gecko is at home on a rock but apparently quite comfortable on the shoulders of freshman softball players as well.

This gecko is at home on a rock but apparently quite comfortable on the shoulders of freshman softball players as well.

by Shannon Coulson
Junior, outfielder
Bondurant, Iowa

As we continue our trip in Tucson, we are all settled in and having some fun. There is never a dull moment with the Central Softball team. Paige thought she would do her part to keep this trip interesting by chipping one of her front teeth. Although we are sure there is a good story behind it, Paige swears she has no idea how it happened. To keep the good times rolling, while waiting to load the bus before some of our games, Jordan found a little gecko. But what good does finding a gecko do if you can’t scare some of the freshmen with it! The gecko had his first rides of the day on Sarah Bowen and Karlee Rock’s shoulders. Sarah had a nice scare thinking that it was a wasp and Karlee quickly tried to flick him off her shoulder. Since he wasn’t welcome on Sarah’s or Karlee’s shoulder we thought he could have one last chance on freshman Abbie Voas’ shoulder. Needless to say, the best reaction was saved for last. Abbie, being quite the country girl… ok, maybe not… freaked out after Jordan calmly asked her what was on her shoulder. After finally saving the gecko from Abbie’s flailing body, the gecko was returned to his home to have a relaxing rest of his day. Even one of our team members, Sebastian (a stuffed animal snake), made our day more adventurous when he decided to take a field trip onto the softball field in the middle of the game. After spending a solid half inning on the field with our defense, he was rescued by Chelsea and returned to his perch on the fence.

Juniors Kallie Schive and Paige Heesch are ready to ride horses in the Arizona desert.

Juniors Kallie Schive and Paige Heesch are ready to ride horses in the Arizona desert.

After playing the first 8 games of our season, the team had a “family day” to rest and recuperate. The team used this day to explore many different things in Arizona. While some of the girls explored Arizona by hiking and driving through the scenery, a few of the girls took a more thrilling ride on ATVs. The girls on ATVs even managed to come back with all their limbs attached. Kallie and Paige took a slightly more unpredictable route by riding horses to see some desert scenery. Despite problems with their horses stopping to go to the bathroom and snacking instead of walking, I’d say their trip was pretty successful. Whitney and her dad Brian spent the day chasing and catching geckos. Luckily for us, Whitney is better at fielding ground balls than she is at catching geckos! The Central Baseball team even got some support from the softball girls as they played Crown (Minn.). Family day was a nice chance for everyone to see a little bit of Arizona before we get back to the best part of being here, playing competitive softball… Central style!

Behind the scenes: Room 236

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014 | No Comments

Kallie2by Kallie Schive
Junior, utility
Marshalltown, Iowa
Lexi Cessna
Senior, outfielder
Bloomington, Ill.

Broadcasting from room 236 at the hotel, we are here to tell you how it has been here in sunny Tucson, outside of the 6 games we have played so far.  Where to begin? No, honestly, where to begin. We start our day with the breakfast of champions, literally.  Central College did it big by letting us stay here.  Take your pick from the variety, which includes great chocolate milk and pancakes every day!!  We then spend hours getting ready; we mean we are the best looking team in the nation!  Needless to say I (Kallie) have more hair appointments than necessary.  But by the time we leave for the field everybody is braided back tightly, pulled together with a rubber band, and tied with up with gameday bow.  And then comes the van ride.  And let us tell you….we ride in the REAL COOL VAN!  Don’t let others fool you, the Pewter Dove (other van) was not the original.  Needless to say as our van pulls up, we rush to read the special signs put up by our fearless driver, Larry.  He never fails to make us laugh and prove why we are really the Cool Van (and the true queens of the circle).

Kallie1Jam Sesh.  Coming from our co-pilot, Jordan Overland, there is never a dull moment as we cruise to the game blaring the latest tunes.  We throw it back with a little Whitney Houston and bring it around with Timber by Ke$ha to get us ready for the day.  Last but not least, as we roll up to the field, she plays World’s Greatest by R. Kelly.  We belt it out (even though some of us probably shouldn’t) and serenade the Pewter Dove as we pile out.

In our free time, not getting ready for a game or playing a game, you can find us in the hot tub playing the movie game, or playing cards, or catching a few Zzz.  In room 236 we spend our free time getting to know the newbie: Miss Abbie Voas.  She may seem quiet and reserved, but you have never lived with her.  Not only does she snore, but she is quite the giggler and tends to be the life of the room.  She enjoys canoeing, hugging Pillowpets, playing with ribbons, and long walks on the beach (aka the hotel pool side).  In her free time she has been napping on the couch and braiding Taylor’s hair.  Quite a strenuous schedule if you ask us.  Needless to say we have enjoyed getting to know her and can’t wait to be roomies for a another whole week.  And then there is Annie.  Well, the only good thing about her being our roommate is that we get to keep the food in our room.  We can’t argue with that.  (Just kidding Annie we love you!)

Back to the softball part, we are tired and worn out, but we can’t wait to get back on the field tomorrow and bring home two more Ws.  That’s what we’re here to do right?  Why not us?

Saving the day on the way to Tucson

Saturday, March 15th, 2014 | 1 Comment

Arizona2014--1March 14, 2014

by Jordan Overland
Senior, left fielder
Boone, Iowa

Another year, another new set of memories.  So far in our journey towards becoming national champions, it seems that we have begun to get in a habit of making saves.  Right away to start our trip, our bus “Slippy” decided it didn’t want to play any of our CDs.  With the save was Whitney in her suggestion to play the game “Heads Up.”  I’m sure Coach enjoyed our screaming and jumping around trying to give hints to the different categories we were playing.

The second save of the day was all thanks to Norma, our bus driver.  Annie neglected to grab her glove off of the bus at the airport (a rather vital piece of equipment for a softball trip), but thankfully Norma was nice enough to turn the bus around to get the glove back to Annie. 

Arizona2014--airportAnother save was made early this morning before our first game.  Abbie Voas may or may not have forgotten her cleats back at the hotel…(cough) freshman (cough)… so it was bullpen catcher Abby Stier to the rescue offering her size 11 cleats to Abbie V. who wears a size 9.  One of the biggest saves of the day thus far, though, came from Mr. Brian Sowers (third baseman Whitney Sowers’ dad).  Trisha Smith was told to go out to the bullpen to start warming up, so her back was to the field.  A high foul ball was hit and it was on the path to go straight at Trisha’s head.  Then out of the blue, Brian bounded towards Trish and deflected the ball from hitting her.  Talk about a close call!

Aside from all of the saves we’ve had, there have been some adjustments down here in Tucson.  For beginners, a lot of us missed the memo that we should have tried getting a tan session in before going outside in the sunny weather.  Since we were practically glowing, a couple of us (including me) thought going without sun screen at our first outdoor practice would be a good idea.  BIG MISTAKE…HUGE! (Cue Julia Roberts from Pretty Woman).  Let’s just say we had some tender shoulders today.  As we are still trying to adjust to the sun, we are quickly getting back into the groove of the Arizona atmosphere.  Being here now for the fourth straight year has begun to be a bit of a routine for the Central softball team.  With constant sunshine, birds chirping around, and a fan club the size of some people’s hometowns, it’s hard not to love following the Central softball crowd around.Arizona2014--Jordan