Brace yourself Ags, a lot has been going on with Aggie Softball so just sit back, relax and enjoy the blog, or short novel to be exact!
First and foremost, I wanted to give huge congratulations to everyone who earned Big 12 awards this weekend. Rhi and Meagan made All-Big 12 first team and Mel, Lauren and Alex made second team. We usually have opening ceremonies before the Big 12 tournament begins to make sure everyone can be recognized in front of all the teams and parents, but the rain ruined that plan. Although the opening ceremonies were cancelled, it definitely did not stop us from having fun!
The night that the ceremony was supposed to take place, Coach called a team meeting in a conference room at the hotel. With most of the parents and Sugar Daddies on hand, cake and two cap and gowns, everyone soon realized that this “team meeting” was a graduation ceremony for Alex and Macie. These two were supposed to walk the stage this past weekend, but because of the Big 12 Championship, they weren’t able to. Tracy and Brian Rutherford took this matter into their own hands and planned our own softball graduation. As soon as Macie and Al got into their cap and gowns, Brian said some opening words, Coach Evans followed with a commencement speech, and then Tracy handed out their diplomas. Now these diplomas weren’t like any normal diploma. It came in its usual hard cylinder container, but this diploma recognized a Degree of Bachelor of Softball and has all the major accolades our class has been a part of. Since I’m graduating in December, I didn’t get the entire cap and gown, because that’s coming later, but the Rutherford’s were nice enough to let me receive this special diploma. I know Alex and Macie enjoyed being able to receive their diplomas in front of all the people that love them. Thanks to the Rutherford’s, the Sugar Daddies, the friends and families, and also the coaching staff for doing that.
The next day, we were fired up and ready to play. We had our fingers crossed that the rain would stay away for the remainder of the weekend. Our prayers were answered and we were able to play against Nebraska for our first game on Saturday. With a total team win, we were set to play OU in the semifinal game of the tournament. Both teams had amazing fans and the atmosphere was incredible, but we weren’t able to pull out a win against OU that day. Everyone on the team hates losing, but I guess you could say that we were excited about what is to come. We knew that we played a good game against Oklahoma and we were happy with how our team feels going into regionals. After the game, we went back to the hotel, Stephen had Spaghetti Warehouse for us in the lobby and then we went to bed. The next morning, we all woke up, ate an early breakfast and were on the road to head back to College Station by 8 a.m..
While we were playing, Lindsey Sisk was at home doing a lot of rehab. You might remember hearing about Lindsey’s first and second injuries (slicing a tendon in her hand and then re-detaching it for the second injury). Well they always say bad things come in three’s. During practice about two weeks ago, Lindsey was running bases with the outfielders in order to help the infield with their quick throws. While running the bases Lindsey turned to go back to the bag and ended up tearing her ACL. She had to have surgery last week and we missed her so much during the Big 12 Tournament. Please pray for a speedy and safe recovery for Lindsey!
After we got home on Sunday all I could do was think about regionals. The team and some of the Sugar Daddies got together Sunday night to find out where we would be playing the first round on our trip back to the Women’s College World Series! I was getting so excited after every team that was called because I knew it was that much closer to telling us where we ended up. My hopes were that we would host a regional, but it turns out we are headed to Baton Rouge! I’m so excited about playing in this regional. It is going to be a double elimination tournament between us, ULL, McNeese State and LSU. This is a very challenging regional, which makes it ten times more fun!! If you are looking for something to do this Friday, Saturday and Sunday or maybe you just want to take a little vacation, there is no better place to do it than Baton Rouge! We need all the Aggie support we can get this weekend and let me tell you, these are going to be some great games of college softball. We had Monday off, but Tuesday’s practice couldn’t come soon enough. Everything we do from this point on is all about our team and what we have worked for all year!
One huge reason why we are able to be playing in the NCAA tournament is because of our amazing junior class! You knew it was coming so here it is…
First there is Rhi (aka Rafiki, Rhi-Money, Rhianisha, or just about anything that you could incorporate “RHI” into). In my opinion, we should forget all the Rhi nicknames and just call her “Clutch.” Since she walked onto this campus, Rhi has been the ultimate impact player. One thing that you might not know about Rhi is that she loves SpongeBob. She and Victoria can quote any episode of SpongeBob, and I mean ANY episode! Rhi also feels no pain. I forgot exactly what game it was, but I remember it was in San Diego and Rhi was pitching. A ball was hit literally right back at her face, ricocheted off her and flew into center field. After the play, everyone was waiting to see if Rhi was going to be okay, but she just turned to the catcher and was ready for the next pitch. Rhi is such a solid player and leads this team so well by her actions.
Next there is Kara (aka KayKay). I absolutely love this girl! Another one of my remedies for a stressful day is to walk two steps over to Kara’s locker and look at the pictures on the inside of her locker. There is one picture that always makes me laugh! It is a picture of Kara and her family, but the best part about that picture is Kara’s little niece, Lily. Lily is the cutest little girl ever and is going to look just like Kara when she gets older. In the picture, Lily is sitting on Kara’s lap and is making the funniest face. Kara is such a hard worker and makes this team better every single day. We have shared many memories of 6 a.m. workouts with Ray (our strength and conditioning coach) during Club del Ray and I will never forget those days, but I definitely won’t miss them! What I am going to miss is the time you thought you were Sharonda, and when you had to speak in front of the team your freshman year!
Kelsey Spittler (aka Spitty or Spitt) and I have been playing ball since we were little kids. She and I played on the Texas Smash when we were growing up and I love the fact that we had the opportunity to play together in college. One thing that hasn’t changed since we were little is her country accent and grammar. I never knew, until Spitty told me, was that you could “warsh” your clothes. Coach always tells us that your teammates are the people you want down in the trenches with you during battle. Spitt is definitely a person I would want to have with me in the trenches, not because she has earned consecutive strength and conditioning All-American awards, but because she is loyal and always there for you. I have to give her parents a shout out because after every game no matter the outcome, they are always there. We have so many laughs and memories in the outfield that I am really going to miss.
The next person I couldn’t live without in the outfield is Andrea Tovar (aka TO-VAR, A.T .or Ang). “Friend,” as Kelsey Spittler would call her, has a locker right next to mine so every time I come into the locker room she puts a smile on my face. Whether we are exchanging YouTube quotes or laughing at something funny that happened that day, A.T. always puts me in a better mood. There is one particular thing that happened this season that I think about if I ever want a quick laugh. After every home game, we all go to change in the locker room until Coach gets there, and then we have to go to the team room for a postgame talk. Well, after one game I was rushing to get to the team room and needed to put my dirty clothes in the pile. I whipped around the corner and chunked my dirty sliders as hard as I could, thinking they would somehow end up in the pile. Needless to say, they didn’t make it into the pile because Andrea’s face was in the way! I was very apologetic, but I couldn’t help laughing so hard! Andrea is such a hard worker and sets an example for the rest of the team.
Although she has only been here for one year, I feel like I have known Lindsey (aka Princess or Linds) forever! With her injuries, this year has been really tough on her, but she has shown this team what she is made out of. I know she is just itching at the opportunity to get back on the field and start playing again and when she does, everyone better watch out! Even though we call her Princess, this girl is the most competitive girl on the team. I’m so excited to see how she helps the team next year! Lindsey loves to sing every song she knows and no one can compete with her dance moves! I’m so happy to have been teammates with Lindsey for a year and I wish we could have actually played with her this season. Even though they are in California, her parents have been so supportive of the team and I’m so lucky to have met them.
Last, but definitely not least is Missy Siegel (aka Miss). Missy is just one of those people that make you feel right at home. Every word that comes out of her mouth I can’t help but laugh! Missy is always coming up with crazy things to do, we think it’s because she was an only child so she had to improvise, but whatever is was it made Missy so much fun to be around! Both Lindsey and Missy have made a huge impact on this team. Missy also loooves to dance and say funny sayings that I, for one, can never get out of my head! For instance, still to this day I have to get Kelsea Orsak to punch me every time I say “DAAANG!” and now “Child please” and “Duh!” have started to surface. I have also loved spending time with Missy’s family during the recent trips! This team would not be near as fun as it is without Missy!
Blooper #12: The Roof is on Fire!
You know you’re an Aggie when….you are smokin’ briskets on a Friday night, in the middle of downtown Oklahoma City, on the rooftop of the Sheraton hotel. After the graduation ceremony, the Sugar Daddies and some parents went to the rooftop of a nearby hotel to start cookin’ the meat for the tailgate the next day at the ballpark. We played football, listened to country music and had a blast. It was all fun and games until we heard fire trucks and sirens. My heart stopped beating when they stopped right beside the hotel because I could just see it now: “Texas Aggie Softball team Creates Havoc in OKC.” Fortunately, the fire trucks were not for us and only a couple of security guards had to come and make sure the smoke was coming from a grill rather than the hotel itself. The team, unfortunately, couldn’t have the end result of the brisket, but from what others told me, it was delicious! A huge thanks goes out to Rosenthal meats!
P.S.-I told you this was a short novel, but thanks for reading and keeping up with Aggie Softball. Now let’s go BTHO the Baton Rouge Regional!