We are going to dance in Eau Claire ( and you know the Dutch will have the best moves Going to nationals is a feeling that is hard to put into words. I am overwhelmed with excitement, joy, and so happy for our team.
Our goal from day one has been to win a national and getting there is just the next step in the process. We have had our struggles through the season thus far, getting off to a shaky start and dealing with some injuries but we have persevered through it all.
I have always had confidence that our team would have success and when I look at my teammates I see the fight in their eyes. We always talk about taking the game one pitch at a time and we have done that which is why we have been successful. We have bought into everything and we understand that it is not about “me” but about “we”. No one person is more important than the rest and this team has embraced that.
I believe we have the BEST coaches in the country and they have done everything in their power to help us be successful. This team has the perfect combination of pitching, defense, and timely offense that I think is going to be hard to beat, The other teams are going to have to play really well because we will not go willingly but will have the will not to lose. We aren’t going to nationals to just go, we are going to WIN it all.
By Katie Canney ‘15
If you would have told me a year ago that I was going to be on the Central softball team, playing in the regionals…I would have laughed at you. If you would have told me that I was going to be part of a softball team that ate, slept, and breathed softball and tradition…I would have shook my head in disbelief. If you would have told me that my life would be forever changed by teammates, coaches, alumni and surrounding supporters that would be brought into my life at Central College…I would have thought you were crazy. And yet here I stand, moving dirt around at first base as the pitches fly by, carrying lucky pennies in my back pocket, wearing the number 28 on my back and never wanting this season to end….I am part of the best program in the nation.
Central Softball is something that is indescribable. You cannot truly understand it, or try, unless you are in the crowd, dugout, or on the field with the best team in the nation. It’s not normal softball, we strive to be different, one step above the rest. We have the best coaching staff, fans, and teammates…and we are all in it together one hundred percent of the way. Coach Wares told us in the locker room before our game that he found a lucky penny on the field the first day of the tournament. “It’s over” were his words…and not a single soul doubts that fact. We ARE made for the National Tournament.
Central played against St. Thomas Saturday in what looked like more of a football game than a softball game in the early innings as our second baseman, Chelsea, was thrown off her feet twice covering second on steals, and I was randomly kicked after a play at first. The early innings were softball at its finest. Two teams, battling neck and neck for a shot to go to the championship game. This game is what it’s all about. But then the Dutch stormed in run after run. Absolutely everyone contributed to our 9-1 victory in the fifth. That’s how Central Softball works. Every single person, whether on the field, in the dugout, in the crowd or watching online contributes to making our goal reality! We are eating, sleeping, and breathing with that ONE thing on our mind…..and we WANT it.
by Karlee Rock ’15
It’s been one crazy week for all of us, as it was filled with the stress of finals, the scramble to finish all of our assignments, and preparing for our regional games. As Chelsea already highlighted, we’ve had several moments of laughter and created memories that we will always share. On Wednesday morning, the day before regional play began, Coach pulled me aside and told me that I would be playing left field this weekend since Heidi was feeling under the weather and dealing with a death in the family. If you know me at all, you would know that I am one of the slowest people on the team (I’m constantly reminded of this) and I have never set foot in the outfield. Coach immediately noted my reaction (which was one of several emotions) and simply asked if I can catch a ball. Next thing I knew, I was surrounded by green grass and Paige next to me. I played out there for two innings Thursday, and Coach probably let out a sigh of relief when not a single ball was hit to me. I guess that shows that we should always expect the unexpected!
Friday was another fun-filled day for the team. We started the morning off right with a delicious breakfast at Hy-Vee, where Coach OB updated the Facebook world with a beautiful picture of the team at 9 AM. We got to celebrate our last meal at Central Market together and had a delicious pre-game meal…or maybe not. Our pre-game ritual began in the locker room, where I was so fortunate to witness Dana and Jordan (both with casts on their hands) sharing hand sanitizer, freshening their smelly hands for the big game. Before we knew it, game time rolled around, where we were able to silence the strong Fontebonne bats and display some of our own, resulting in another victory!
Our post-game meal was at Sports Page, probably because Pella doesn’t have a Wendy’s (HAHA!). Whitney strutted in showing off a jacket, which ended up being Coach’s. She couldn’t get the courage to make him do something to get it back, so she handed it over. Needless to say, it caused for chuckle amongst us girls.
It was another great day for the team, and a great day to be Dutch! We’re anxious to get back out there to take on St. Thomas and show them what Central Softball is all about. The road to Eau Claire continues….see you there!
You could say our road to Eau Claire, Wis. has already been an extremely eventful one. In the beginning of the week much of the team was trying to finish up finals, while I tried to be secretive about the fact that I didn’t have any. This plan failed when my, stressed at the time roomie (Jordan), asked me why I was not stressed and studying like everyone else. Working around my obviously hectic schedule of relaxing and some of the team’s finals we were able to get a couple of practices in. These practices were eventful in themselves. For example, our lovely teammate and eccentric (synonyms: unconventional, bizarre, outlandish, extraordinary, oddball, wacky, kooky) third baseman Whitney happened to hit a home run during practice. Following the home run, she slightly rolled her ankle in her Baywatch-like jog around the bases. While discussing her ankle roll with teammate Jordan, her roomie and good friend Abbey was up to bat and slings a foul ball to the left side, hitting Whitney right in the butt. As you could imagine, the whole team exploded with laughter.
Besides practices, we all had the privilege of going to eat at the home of Trevor Castle’s family (radio sportscaster for our team) for dinner as well. After delicious tacos for dinner and fruit pizza and brownies for dessert, it was definitely time to burn off some of those unwanted calories with a game of hack. For the first time in Central College history, Kelsey was able to get through a game of hack without a matrix-like plummet to avoid the hacky-sack. However, Trevor’s 3-year-old son Vance used his magic wand (a stick that was found nearby) to magically make us all fall to the ground. So despite Kelsey’s ability to stand strong and face the hack, there were still several dramatic dives into the ground. As the hacky-sack and meal both sound amazing, these were not quite that great for Jordan. The Mexican food did not exactly sit well in her stomach; she was in the bathroom for the majority of the night, but is now fully recovered and prepared for the rest of the busy and exciting week.
Aside from all the excitement from practice and the dinner at the Castles, our real excitement of the week was getting to start regional play. Wednesday, the anticipation just kept building. While some of the team spent their time studying and taking finals, Karlee, Whitney, and I got the chance to be a part of a campus photo shoot with Mallory, poster-child of Central College. This casual photo shoot was filled with laughing and talking about our game coming up the next day. On Thursday some people had to finish up some finals, but as soon as it was time to be in the locker room we were all officially professional softball players. After some pregame fun, we finally got the opportunity to step on the field. The first 6 innings of the game flew by, since it was practically three up three down every inning. But after this it got a little more interesting, as the torrential downpour started in the bottom of the seventh. It ended up being a great win, but if you want all the details I advise you read those on the website from the expert, Larry. Following the game we were able to eat some delicious lasagna made by Ashley and Caitlyn and then get some sleep. Now we are up and ready to go for another day of Central Softball. Today is just another day for us to take advantage of the opportunity to get to play as our journey to Eau Claire, Wis. continues.