3rd part of my Interviews with our Pitchers continues.....
Part 3 of 3
Coach Roth's Scouting Report of Abby:
Abby has a super great curve ball that made batters look feeble. She is not afraid to brush back the hitter. If not for a season ending injury, she was most definitely an All-State player her High School Senior year. Unflappable, able to recover quickly after any setback. Super dedicated offseason worker. Offseason work went a long way in how she became the all time Strike Out leader at Concordia.
Interview with Abby
Tell us a little about yourself currently (what is life like for you at this date)- I’m currently working at Aldevron in Fargo, ND as a laboratory technician supervisor. Loving it and saving lives! I’m also an assistant softball coach at Shanley Highschool.
State 2 or 3 softball facts about you that most people might not know. (List any accolades or some basic facts from your softball days)- 1. I hold the single season as well as all time strike out record at Concordia. 2. I lead the nation in hit batters my junior year of college. 3. Was all conference in college.
What age did you start pitching? I started pitching my 7th grade year. Never too late to start!
What age were you when you thought to yourself- “I can do this”? I started getting the hang of things and more consistent the summer of my 8th grade year. Built a lot of confidence.
(4 parts) What was your favorite and non-favorite parts about each- practices and games?
Practices (what you liked)- Practices were some of the best times to build team camaraderie. It was always one of my favorite parts of my day.
Practices (what you didn’t like so much)- Practices do become a bit of a time commitment, juggling school and a sport gets tough at times but it’s all worth it in the end.
Games (what you liked)- Competing and playing the sport you love is the best feeling!
Games (what you didn’t like so much)- I honestly can say there is nothing I don’t like about games. Facing adversity during games is tough, but rising to the challenge and overcoming is a great feeling.
Name any goals you set going into your softball seasons- The biggest goal I set for myself was throw my best pitch every pitch, no matter if it was a game or practice.
What kept you motivated to keep you going through the tough times as a pitcher? As a pitcher you are often thought of as a leader. Teammates and coaches look up to you a lot. Keeping motivated for them and doing the best for them was a great way to keep going.
What is your favorite pitch? Curveball all day erryday.
List a good softball memory- Winning the divisional title for the first time in Sidney Eagle history my junior year against BC!
Favorite pitching drill- My favorite drill is ladders, got to hit a spot so many times before you move on or else you run a lot a lot.
Favorite motivational Movie and Song- Shrek and I’m Not Okay by My Chemical Romance.
How much pitching did you do in the offseason? During the off-season I pitched 3 times a week.
Is there anything you would have changed in your younger years of pitching knowing what you know now? Working on the mental aspect of the game is huge. If I could go back I definitely would have focused more time on that.
Give a tip or good advice for a young player looking to become a pitcher- Just go out there and throw, you have to start somewhere. Also pitching is the best part of softball and you look the coolest.
What was the difference between pitching in college compared to pitching in high school? The competition across the board was just tougher. Everyone, 1-9 on the line up was tough. If you didn’t throw your best pitch every time they would definitely capitalize on that. But you learn quickly :)
Add any other comments that may be helpful for younger pitchers- Enjoy every minute of softball, or sports in general. It goes by so fast and you’ll miss the practices, late nights, teammates, and competing! Have fun with it because softball rocks so hard and the memories will last you forever! .. Terry, thanks for being a huge part of my softball success! Let me know if you have anything else. I enjoyed this a lot!
Thank you Abby! - Coach Roth
Outstanding job ladies! A big "Thank You" again- Abby, Maddie and Natalie! Your input is such valuable information for any young softball player looking to become a pitcher.
Some of the points they made that stood out:
> Age is not as big of factor as one may think. You don't have to start at a real young age to become a successful pitcher. As Abby says-
"Never too late to start!"
> Goals are important. Both Team and individual. Set your goals and then make a plan for accomplishing them.
> With all of them, it did take some time to realize that feeling of “I can do this”. Young players need to understand that pitching is not a quickly acquired skill. It takes time and lots of practice. Also, pitching may not be your favorite position. However, with a little practice, maybe that will change. It did for Natalie, she states-
"I wanted to play first base. I started to like pitching after my Dad encouraged me to try out a camp."
> Practices and games can have their ups and downs. Doing repetitive things can get old but perseverance helps to attain success. Learn how to be mentally tough to get you through the struggles of practices and games. As Maddie says-
"be mentally tough because that’s half the battle".
> Motivation can come from numerous things. Everyone has their own ways to motivate themselves. Use- what motivates you- as fuel to keep on improving.
> Offseason work is very important if you want to be a good pitcher. Take some breaks, but don't expect to simply pitch in the softball season itself and presume that is all you need to be a good pitcher. Try to make it a point to put in the time. Do the work and strive to improve each time out.
> Teammates, coaches, parents and fans all have major impact on the development of a good pitcher. Each has a role to play and each are very important.
Please get this useful instruction shared out to your young players. Have them read all three parts a few times.
Also, give me some feedback.... Always open for any opinions or helpful comments.
Be Well and Play Ball!