As the end of the final semester for the 2016-2017 school year slowly wraps up, Virginia Wesleyan’s softball and baseball teams prepared for their senior day on Saturday, April 19. The softball team walked into a double header against conference competitor Bridgewater and the baseball team did the same against Emory and Henry.
Saturday was a bittersweet day for both the softball and baseball as they celebrate and recognize seniors who have done so much for the team, but also realize that this will be their final collegiate home game.
“My time here at school and on the softball field have made me into the person I am today. Those girls that I shared my life with were and are amazing to a point that I can cherish this forever. This year I have bonded more than ever with a team and a coaching staff to where I enjoy every time we practice and pay. No one can take these moments and memories away from me and I love it and them” (Henderson).
Both teams continue to prepare for the rest of their season as the ODAC tournament is around the corner. They anticipate the rest of their games and continue to work hard in practice to have an amazing conclusion to their season. For both teams, this theme of perseverance, dedication and hard work seem to set deep into the roots of their success.
“I have learned perseverance playing here for my four years. Through all the injuries, not being able to play every season, but specifically through games that we should not have won but we persevered through and came out on top. This is something I will take into my next chapter of my life and I am so grateful for everything being on this team has taught me,” Bailey, second basemen, said.
Justin Erby, senior centerfielder contributed to this theme with his favorite memory from his four years playing for Wesleyan.
“It was a double header at Lynchburg and we were down 6-1, leading into the top of the 8 inning. Coach Francis had put in all subs and taken all the seniors out except two. In the end, we worked hard and pushed through that inning to come out on the top of the 9 and won the game. This memory is my favorite, because it showed me that you should always play the game 100% because you never know how far determination will take you.”
Being part of the Virginia Wesleyan softball and baseball team has not just been beneficial to the seniors who are graduating, but also to the underclassmen who look up to them as they continue the rest of their seasons here. The seniors from both teams have shown their teammates and will continuously show them what it means to be part of such hardworking and loving teams.
“The seniors have taught me what it means to not be just about your own individuality but instead what the concept of a team really is. Their love for the game has only helped my love for the game grow too and their appreciation for the game is something I look up too,” Hannah Hull, freshman pitcher, said.
The seniors’ journey here at Virginia Wesleyan College will soon become a closing chapter in their life in a few weeks, but the support and love they receive from their teammates will be continuous after graduation day.
“Enjoy your career here while it lasts, academically and athletically. The memories you make all 4 years will last forever; regardless what kind of season you have. The bond you have with you team and those memories you make will last forever,” Newcomb said.
“Enjoy every second of it, you only have 4 years,” Erby said.
(photo: Jerry Sprouse Sr. | Courtesy)