Your inside access to the Delaware State University softball team. Posts from coaches, players and support staff.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Meac Challenge Week

Meac Challenge Week

Last week was a mental and physical challenge for all the ladies in during the challenges the teams earned points in which were totaled at the end of the week. The week taught us the strengths and weakness that we need focus on for our season that is approaching here in the next couple of months. Several Players stepped outside their comfort zones and grew a lot during these challenges . The teams were separated into three teams Hornet Strong, Relentless Courage, and Competitive Excellence in which are our three core covenants that we stand by as a team.              

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Relentless Courage
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Competitive Excellence
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Hornet Strong

There were all different events each day of the week. Here is a brief event schedule we took the players through.

Monday: Weight room Challenge of sled pushes and pulls, and tire flips

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Tuesday: GameDay  ( Ultimate Frisbee, Tiger Ball)

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Wednesday: Obstacle Course on the football field

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Thursday: Team Mile Swim

Friday: Paint Ball Battle

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Saturday: Team Skits

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Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Coach Reflections

Good Morning Bloggers!

After a few days away from school and softball for the Thanksgiving holiday, the coaches took a minute to reflect on lessons they learned or quality experience they gained from their college playing career.

The question all three coaches were asked was: What is the most important life lesson you learned from your college softball experience?

And their responses...

Coach Tyson:

"I learned the importance of bringing my best self in everything I do. I learned that inconsistency in one area leads to inconsistencies in other areas and bringing my best self avoids that.

Additionally, I learned how to battle through adversity and how to keep my mind on the controllables. The game is already hard in itself and if you attempt to think about things outside of your control, it makes the game feel much bigger."
Coach Mac:
"My college softball experience taught me a lot about keeping things in perspective. No matter how tough a conditioning workout was, how heavy that weight on the bar felt, how badly I failed in an at bat, or how tough the loss was, I knew I would survive, I had no time to dwell, and that 'life' was still happening. Throughout the four years, I learned how to play with my heart on my sleeve and for my teammates while not allowing any hard situation or loss to affect my responsibilities as a human off the field."
Coach Jackson:
"Some of the most important lessons I learned about life from my college experience was: how to handle being knocked down and to keep moving forward, how to work harder even when you think you have nothing left to give, and how to find a way to get the task done even when the task seems impossible and especially when nobody thinks you’re able to succeed."
"Sports is a metaphor for overcoming obstacles and achieving against great odds. Athletes, in times of difficulty, can be important role models."
-Bill Bradley

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Alyssa Diaz

we decided to feature a freshman in this week's blog. 
Meet, Alyssa Diaz!
Hometown: Fontana, CA
Primary position: Shortstop
Jersey Number: 4
Birthday: November 23
Who is the funniest person you know?
My sister
If you could live in any TV home, what would it be?
What are your pet peeves?
When people chew their gum loudly and crack their knuckles.
If you could pick a new first name, what would it be?
What is your favorite Disney movie?
Tie between The Lion King and The Emperor's New Groove
Favorite Holiday?
Name a product or service you love so much that you'd happily be that company's spokesperson:
If you could be a cartoon character for a week, who would you be?
If you could eat only 3 foods for the rest of your life, what would they be?
Chicken wings, ribs, and pasta

"We are very excited to see the bright future ahead for Alyssa. She is going to be a quiet warrior for our team. She brings the work ethic and skills to be a dominant player for this program".
-DSU Coaching Staff

Welcome Alyssa Diaz!!!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Homecoming Week!

This Past Weekend's Line-Up:
Friday, October 13th
Game 1 of the Red vs. Blue World Series
To wrap up our last week of the fall season (that is, when the entire team is allowed to practice together), DSU Softball held an intersquad World Series! The World Series was the team split in half, Team Blue vs. Team Red. The series was a best of 3 games with DSU Softball shirts and a heavy weight championship belt awarded to the winner. Game 1 was played Friday afternoon with Team Blue earning the first W with a score of 11-2.
Saturday, October 14th
DSU Football Homecoming Game & Tailgate
Saturday afternoon, DSU Football played their Homecoming game with tons in attendance. Prior to the game, DSU Softball hosted their second tailgate of the year but this time teaming up with HFLO, a club on campus that our senior pitcher is heavily involved with. Jessica Shalongo is the vice-president of HFLO (Health Fitness and Student Leader Organization) and thought the softball tailgate would be a perfect opportunity to tie together an awesome club with softball and make people more aware of fitness standards and where their personal health and fitness levels are.
Sunday, October 15th
Alumni vs. Current Hornet Softball Game
Alumni & Current Hornet Homerun Derby
Game 2 of the Red vs. Blue World Series
Sunday, the softball team covered all its bases. The day started off with a fun game versus alumni who ranged from graduating 24 years ago to graduating just this past spring. To show what good sports they are, after the alumni lost a tight 1 run game to the current Hornets, they sat down after the game and answered several questions the current Hornets had as everyone enjoyed lunch and snacks! After some mingling, several current players and alumni competed in a homerun derby. Current Hornets came out on top again with Desiree Moreno taking home the title. To finish up the day, the current Hornets resumed their World Series with game 2. After another highly intense and competitive day, Team Blue took the series with the 8-1 win!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Getting to Know Vanessa Barron

Vanessa Barron

Vanessa Barron on signing day
We would like to introduce our freshman infielder Vanessa Barron to everyone. She was born and raised in Riverside, California. Vanessa is majoring in Criminal Justice and minoring in Sociology. Vanessa played at Stockdale High School in Bakersfield, California. Vanessa excelled her senior season of high school, she hit .480 and had a fielding percentage of .965.  In High School, Barron earned three all-league honors, three all-area honors, two Coaches award, and Golden Glove. As you can tell, Vanessa is very dedicated to competitive excellence she has brought a contagious energy to the team in practices and games. Get to know Vanesa a little more with a Q&A of her experience so far at DSU.

Barron pushing through Military Training

Why did you choose Delaware State?
 I chose Delaware State because the girls were nice here and I felt welcomed as soon as I got on campus and the coaches were happy to have me on the team
What have you learned so far since joining the program?
I learned that now as we get older we must start playing as a team and help each other get through the tough times.
What is your favorite thing about the program?
My favorite thing about the program is that the coaches are here to help us and the girls are very family like.
How have you felt the fall season went for the team?
I feel like the fall season was a learning experience for all of us because we were all getting to know each other and how we play.

Vanessa keep striving to be great, thank you for being a Hornet!!!

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Fall Season Begins

Hello Bloggers!

Jordan Reid (right) and Coach Jackson (middle)
This past weekend of DSU Softball was fun-filled, as usual! To start the weekend off, DSU Athletics hosted their annual Hall of Fame night where new HOF inductees are honored with dinner and guests. DSU Softball was well represented at the HOF dinner with alum Jordan Reid and former head coach Jeff Savage both being inducted for their successful careers as player and coach respectively. In audience, showing their support, was Head Coach Amber Jackson and current seniors Khaliyah Flournory, Mika Lumsden, Jessica Shalongo, and Vanessa Washington.

Saturday was DSU Football's first home game which was rightfully named Hall-of-Fame Day. On top of being recognized the night before in a more intimate setting, new HOF inductees were announced on-field during halftime. Before the football game began, the softball team hosted a tailgate encouraging folks across campus to stop by and get acquainted with the team. On top of tons of food, games were played including Spike Ball, Corn Hole, Water Pong, and Water Balloon Softball. A special shout out to Mr. and Mrs. Shields for coming into town and helping to put together a very fun and successful tailgate!

Sunday (9/24) was the softball team's first of four fall doubleheaders. Sunday's games were held at University of Delaware, while the next 3 doubleheaders are as follows:

Sunday, October 1st @ University of Wilmington
11:00am & 1:00pm

Saturday, October 7th @ Towson University
3:00pm & 5:00pm

Sunday, October 8th @ George Washington University
12:00pm & 2:00pm

Although the weekend did not end with our intended results, the team has started this week off with a vengeance. We can't wait to see the product DSU Softball creates by the end of the fall and heading into spring! And another thank you to all of the fans who came to support on Sunday - we hope to see you throughout the fall and spring!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Marine Corps Training Day

On Saturday, the girls got the opportunity to train with Captain Derrick Oliver, Lt. Ellen Gleason, and Sgt. John Manching from the Marine Corps Selection Office in Newark, DE. The girls were put through the challenge of fighting both mental and physical fatigue. The staff put the girls through their combat fitness test that included three different events. The first event was a half mile run around the track in which all the girls finished in their respective times. Then, they had two minutes of lifting a 8 pound ammo cans over the head and our highest score came from  sophomore Hannah Shields in which she had 55 lifts in the two minutes. After, the girls had a “Maneuver Under Fire” drill which included a 10-yard sprint, 15-yard crawl (low then high crawl), hauling a simulated casualty(teammates) using two different carries: drag and fireman's while zigzagging through cones, sprints while carrying two 8-pound ammo cans through the same cones, throwing a dummy hand grenade(softball) into a marked circle 22.5 yards, and 5 pushups and a sprint with the ammo cans to the finish line. The last event with the Marine Corps was a leadership course where one player had to get their team through  many obstacles and find a way to strategically get all their teammates out alive. According to senior Khaliyah Flournory, she learned that “when a gifted team dedicates themselves to unselfish trust and combines instinct with boldness and effort, they are on the right track to attain success”.  The theme that all the players and coaches took from the experience and are going to focus on throughout the year were these five words: Loyalty, Dependability, Unselfishness, Decisiveness, and Mental and Physical Endurance. As you can tell, we learned a lot of things and the players learned a lot about each other but sophomore Jalen Wicher put it best, “I learned that no matter the circumstances my teammates will always provide the support I need to push through the challenging times both on the field and off”.  This experience was a great experience for our girls. Check out thefull video of the day at this link:

I learned that my body is way stronger than my mind. And I was able to push myself to the limit with the encouragement from my team. -Senior Mika Lumsden

Monday, May 8, 2017

A Letter to DSU Softball Vol. 2

Last year we started a tradition where the Seniors write a letter to future DSU Hornet softball players. They left great advice and left a lasting impression on this program. Senior weekend just past and it's time for our 2 seniors to write their letter. They did an excellent job in telling future players what it means to play for this program. This is what they had to say:

Dear Future Hornets,

First, we want to say congratulations on your commitment to play softball at DSU. We remember how relieving and great it felt to know that all our hard work had finally paid off. However, remember that this is still only the beginning. There is still so much more you will learn about this sport and playing at the next level.  We have three core covenants or guiding principles for this team. The three core covenants that we stand for are family, excellence and courageous.
            As a family we encourage each other to achieve academic goals. We hold each other accountable to attend class and also study together. It is important to positively represent DSU softball in the community and on social media with our actions and behavior. We invest time in building relationships with teammates and to love one another. It is important that we are always polite, kind, generous, and thankful. We are consistently encouraging one another in the weight room and pushing each other to give best effort. We work hard together, no one left behind! We respect our coaches and teammates at all times. We support teammates, coaches and program with actions, behavior and words. We trust each other to give our best effort daily. We encourage, push, and pick each other up. We help each other when we are struggling. We work hard in our personal lives to build up our DSU family. Spending quality time together helps us become a family.
            We strive for excellence in the classroom, community, with our nutrition, in our strength and conditioning program, on the softball field and in our personal lives. We attend every class, on time. We stay organized to complete all assignment on time. We do our own work and do not cheat. We aren’t afraid to get tutors or extra help when we are struggling in a class. We complete all assigned study hall hours. We volunteer our time to make an impact in our community. We are 15 minutes early to events. In everything we do we do it with good intentions. We fuel our bodies before and after workouts by making healthy nutritional decisions. We make stretching and rolling out a priority in our recovery process. When it comes to strength and conditioning, we prepare with our best effort and trust in our preparation. We never make excuses or quit. We complete every lift, rep, set, and run that is given to us by our coaches. We constantly push ourselves further. We commit to mastering the fundamentals and executing the details of the game. We communicate with each other during each play. We leave everything on the field and sprint on and off the field. We play with passion, energy, and effort daily. We strive to be the best version of ourselves. We surround ourselves with people who support encourage and challenge us to be the best.
            We are courageous because we properly prepare for class, exams and trust in our preparation. We initiate and build relationships with our professors. We give our best effort when things get tough and we never give up. We go all out and give 100% to strive for a 4.0 GPA. We aren’t afraid to participate in class discussions. We walk tall with our head up, make eye contact, say hello, and shake hands. We don’t lie or cheat and we show integrity at all times. We make good choices about what we consume and know that it will impact our performance. It’s important to be proactive, stay committed to rehab and recovery, never give up and feel sorry for ourselves. We compete with each other and challenge ourselves every day.  We act differently than how we feel. We believe in ourselves and our teammates. We have an unrelenting will to win every pitch and trust in our abilities. It is important to act, walk, talk and play like the player we want to be… a champion. We are relentless in our pursuit of our goals. We strive for success daily even if we have to get out of our comfort zone to achieve this success. We always show passion for the things that interest us.
Don’t forget to remember that this is an opportunity of a lifetime that not many are granted. It’s important to start training your mind and heart to become the competitor you were designed to be! However, at the end of the day always remember to have fun and make the most of these next four years. We are not lying when we say they go by extremely fast. We are sitting here typing this letter to you future hornets trying to figure out how we got here so quickly. We hope this can give you a good idea of what Delaware State University Softball is all about so you guys can come in and continue to build the legacy.

We wish you all the best! 

Tara and Dani (2017 graduating seniors)

Thank you Dani and Tara for this letter. This is exactly what it means to play for this program and everything we stand for.

MEAC Tournament Preview

    The MEAC Tournament is quickly approaching and the countdown to our trip to Ormond Beach, FL begins. Your Lady Hornets finish second in the Northern Division of the MEAC. As the #2 seed, we will take on North Carolina A&T the #3 seed from the south. With all the excitement that is about to happen, we asked the players a few questions about the Tournament.

 Freshmen Jordan, Hannah, Kaleigh, Micaela, Desiree, and Jasmine will experience their first MEAC conference tournament. Thus we asked them a few questions and they shared their thoughts on the tournament.

What are you most looking forward to at the Tournament?

"I am very excited to have the opportunity to play at the conference tournament. I believe that it will be a great experience for me and allow me to grow. I think there will be a different type of energy and adrenaline running through our veins that will allow everyone to rise up to the occasion."- Jasmine

"Going into the conference Tournament the thing I'm looking forward to the most is experiencing the intensity of it all. I can't wait to feel the adrenaline rush that makes me feel like I don't ever want to stop playing. I have nothing but excitement going into my first MEAC Tournament and I can't wait to compete with my Hornet sisters."- Desiree

How do you think this will be different than the regular season?

"This will be different from the regular season because it is do or die. There is a lot more on the line in each game than there was in the regular season."- Micaela

"This is a now or never Tournament and I'm excited to be a part of the intense energy and atmosphere."-Hannah

"I think that this will be different from the regular season because we'll be facing teams that force us to play at our best and not slack off one bit. I think the intensity and energy will be a lot higher and the love of the game will be shown more."- Kaleigh

    Sophomores Alexis Goldsby and Sabrina Quarles gave their reflection on the impression they were left with after their first tournament and what their goals are for this year. 

What was your first impression of the MEAC Tournament?

"My first impression of the MEAC was definitely unexpected. The way they players competed and cheered was more energizing and scrappy than I had imagined. It was as if the team with the most energy is the team that came out on top at the end."-Sabrina

"My first impression was that the Tournament is very beatable and we could win."- Alexis

What is your goal for the Tournament?

"My goal for the Tournament is to play to the best of my ability every pitch and leave everything on the field. Of course I would love to take 1st, but more importantly I don't want to have any regrets. I want to end the tournament knowing that I stepped up and gave everything I had."- Sabrina

"I want to win the Tournament this year."-Alexis

    Juniors Vanessa, Khaliyah, Jessica, and Mika are going into their third Tournament with high expectations. They want to win for the senior class. We asked them what they are most looking forward to and what makes the tournament so different from the regular season.

What are you most looking forward to at MEACS?

"I'm looking forward to competing one last time with our seniors, taking down the competition, and spending time with the team."- Vanessa

"I'm looking forward to playing as the underdogs. We have the potential to upset so many teams and i think that is pretty cool."- Jess

What makes the Tournament so different than the regular season?

"MEAC's is so different because it is the last time to prove that we have what it takes to win."- Mika

"MEAC's is different because it's essentially to take each game one at a time and to play each game like it's our last."- Khaliyah

   For Seniors Tara and Dani, this is their last Tournament. We asked them what is their favorite part about the MEAC Tournament and how they felt about going into their last Tournament.

What is your favorite part about the MEAC Tournament?
"I love the intensity and competition. it is also fun to play the teams from the South that we have not seen all season."- Dani

"I love the competitive atmosphere of the MEAC Tournament"- Tara

How do you feel going into your last one?

 "I feel excited and determined to win a championship going into my last MEAC Tournament."- Dani

"I feel determined to bring back a MEAC Championship."- Tara

Visit us every week for a new update on this blog. Make sure you follow us on Twitter for MEAC Championship Updates on your Lady hornet Softball Team!!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

A Record Breaking Season

FRESHMAN TURSELLINO EARNS NFCA MID-ATLANTIC ALL-REGION THIRD TEAM RECOGNITIONIf you ask anyone on this team about Tara Tursellino, you will get the same answer every time. Everyone would say that Tara is a hard working player, excellent teammate, and a stand out leader for this program. Tara's dedication to pitching is far above what any coach could ask for. Her leadership skills has blossomed over the years. She has been a captain of this team for the last 3 years. All of her hard work has paid off at DSU. Over the last two years, she has had record breaking seasons, which she has remained humble about the entire way.

Tara had a record breaking season as a Junior in 2016, breaking both the appearances and saves records. She currently has 125 appearances and 10 saves (6 of those coming in her freshman year). Those achievements lead to her third selection to the All-MEAC second team.

This season, Tara is at it again. She is taking down batters and breaking records one at at time. On March 25, against Norfolk State, Tara broke the career record for Innings Pitched. She now sits alone at the top with 501 innings and counting. However, that was not the end of Tara's run for the record books; she again put her name in the books on April 9 at Hampton University where she broke the career record for Strikeouts. She currently has 357.

We asked Tara about the records she has broken here at Delaware State, and this is what she had to say:

SB: HORNETS OPEN MEAC PLAY WITH ROAD SERIES AT UMES"First of all, I want to thank God for giving me the ability to break these records. It feels like a dream come true. I am thankful that I had the opportunity to break these records. I want to thank my coaches for believing in me and my teammates for having my back on the mound. Without them, this accomplishment wouldn't have been possible."

                                          We also asked her what her favorite thing about pitching is.

Tara Tursellino"My favorite thing about pitching is throwing the rev fire ball and seeing how many revolutions I can get. I love competing against myself to beat my previous score. I also love fooling the batter with my rise ball. It is my favorite pitch to throw."

We don't believe that Tara is done breaking records this season. She is 1 win shy of tying the record for wins. The current record is 45 set by Brittney Ruark in 2010. She is also 1 complete game shy of the record held by three other Hornets. Our hope for this season is that Tara sits alone at the top of all of these records. With 10 games remaining in the regular season, we have no doubt that she can pull it off. 

Congratulations Tara!


Check back each week for another Hornet blog update.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Jordan Casey: A Future Soldier

Most student athletes will tell you how hard it is to wake up to be at a 6 am practice, then workout, then go to school, and find time for their social life. Jordan is one of the few exceptions. Jordan never complains about any of these activities AND you would have no idea that before all of that she may have come from Physical Training with her ROTC Battalion. Private Casey or Jordan, as we know her, aspires to be in Military Intelligence. "Military Intelligence is responsible for all collected intelligence during Army missions. They provide essential information that often saves soldiers fighting on the front lines", Jordan explains. The DSU Army ROTC Unit is allowing her to jump start her career. She has the opportunity to become commissioned in the Army as an Officer upon graduation.

Alongside all of her major classes required for her degree in Criminal Justice, Jordan is enrolled in an ROTC course that focuses on leadership, tactics and techniques, personal development, values, ethics, and officership.  Her favorite aspect of the class is the hands on activities and the atmosphere of PT. "The atmosphere of PT is one of my favorite parts. You would imagine that everyone would be tired at 0545, but no we are motivated and excited to be together in order to get stronger and better", says Jordan.

We asked Jordan some questions specifically about the ROTC program. Here is what she had to say.

What is PT like?
At PT we run a lot. Early morning PT is designed to be done to keep us in shape and help us on our AFT, which is a PT test that we have to pass. This includes a 2 mile run, 2 minutes of push ups, and 2 minutes of sit ups.

How is your Battalion (group of students) set up?
At DSU, we are a part of the Blue Hen Battalion. The Battalion is made up of a few schools with the University of Delaware being the host school. DSU is specifically is the Bravo Company inside of the Battalion.

What was your JROTC rank in high school and what is it now?
I graduated high school with a rank of Lieutenant Colonel. I was the Battalion Commander my senior year. That means I was in charge of over 200 cadets. I am currently a Private at DSU.

How do you balance ROTC and softball?
Managing ROTC and softball is difficult, but definitely doable. Coming in as a freshman in the fall and trying to make every single PT session and being at every softball event was difficult. I quickly learned that I cannot be in two places at once. Out of season, I try to make every single ROTC event, even if that meant missing practice. During season though, softball comes first. The physical aspect is not bad, I feel as though doing both only helps me unless I overwork myself. Finding the balance is key.

Delaware State has made all of these opportunities happen for Jordan. She has the opportunity to play the sport that she loves, obtain the degree she desires, and she will have a head start on her career by becoming an officer in the United States Army. These opportunities can be a reality for you as well, as long as you put your mind and heart to it.

Check back every Monday for a new blog! GO HORNETS

Monday, April 3, 2017

Pre-Game Rituals

This week we asked some of the players what their pre-game rituals are. Read below to find out what some of our players had to say.

What are some of your pre-game rituals?

JR Vanessa Washington #23
"I have to visualize myself doing what I want to happen."

JR Jessica Shalongo #20
"On the way to the field I listen to the music I like. It helps me stay relaxed and not overthink. Once we get to the field I always have positive self talk throughout my warm up. Before going on the field I always get a piece of gum and reapply chapstick. On the field I take deep breathes before each pitch and walk to the back of the circle and look at my cleats and than my teammates to make sure they are ready."

SO Alexis Goldsby #2
"A pregame ritual that I have is after warm ups, I pray before I go out on the mound."

SO Sabrina Quarles #1
"During warm ups I prepare mentally. Giving myself certain situations before each swing off the tee and in the cage. I find a focal point on the field to keep me engaged throughout the game. Right after the national anthem, I always say a prayer. Praying for strength and health throughout the game for not only my team but our opponents. Then I thank God for having the opportunity to play this game."

FR Jasmine Melgoza #8
"I only have a few pregame rituals like listening to music which is most likely Rihanna. Also depending on my mood I either chew gum or eat seeds throughout the game. Lastly, I always have to stretch before each at bat."

FR Kaleigh Berry #5
"When I'm getting dressed I always put my right sock on first and when I get to the field I put my right cleat on before my left. I always have one of my teammates braid my hair for me and I always listen to at least 1 song to pump me up before we get to the field."

Assistant Coach Jessica Mattia 
"When I was a player, a lot of our pregame rituals were done as a team. When we jogged or threw, we had a cheer that we all did to just remember the tradition and pride we have in our school and program. We all played volleyball in the parking lot before every home game and we always parked in the same spots. My own pregame rituals were more of superstition. I had a sock that I wore every game on my right foot even if i had to wear it under the game sock for the day. It was from my first college win and I wore it every game. I also ate either bacon or pixie sticks before every game.

As a coach, I don't really have pregame rituals. I have a few in game rituals or superstitions. I make sure I high five the pitchers the same way every time." 

Athletic Trainer Casey Cooper
"I don't really have any, just to make sure I have my kit ready to go in case I need it and also make sure I have enough gum during baseball and enough seeds for softball." :)

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

What Inspires Us?

We all have that one thing that inspires us most. For some, it's our parents and for others it is a quote or idea. We all have something ignites our fire and helps us on our journey to greatness. This week we asked our players to tell us what inspires them to play the game of softball with passion and intensity. Their responses really showed their heart and their love of the game.

Vanessa Washington
The goal of trying to be the best that I can be or striving to do better than my best is what inspires me. The will to try and be better than my best is what motivates me to take an extra rep, to wake up a little earlier and get more work in, to keep going when I feel like I can't go on anymore.- Vanessa Washington

Sabrina Quarles"Talent is God given. Be humble. Fame is man-given. Be grateful. Conceit is self-given. 
Be careful." This quote by John Wooden helps me to remember the greater aspects in life. Everyday that I get to play softball is a blessing and so I continuously work hard and play each game like it's my last, leaving everything out on the field.- Sabrina Quarles

Jasmine MelgozaI play because I fell in love with the game when I was young. It's always been my safe haven, a place where I can be myself and do what I do best. I play for my parents and myself as they have helped me to get where I am today. This sport challenges me to do my best and overcome failure. It has taught me many lessons and skills that I am able to apply to the real world. I am grateful for everything it has taught me and will continue to teach me in the future.- Jasmine Melgoza

Khaliyah Flournory

"If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it. It's the hard that makes it great." This quote by Tom Hanks has motivated me to embrace the game and the adversity that comes along with it. While juggling the challenges of consistency and positive mentality, softball has taught me to look failure straight in the face and compete with it. Not many people can do that. - Khaliyah Flournory

Tara Tursellino"Be strong and courageous. Don't be afraid do not be discouraged for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9. This verse inspires me to play because believing in this verse allows me to play freely. I don't play for myself, I play for God. He gave me the ability to play and for that I play for Him.- Tara Tursellino

Kaleigh BerryMy teammates are what inspire me to play. Watching them give their all and nothing less whether it's at practice or a game and seeing them trying to do whatever possible. It pushes me to try to be a fierce competitor and it makes me want to get better for them.- Kaleigh Berry

Hannah Shields"Somewhere behind the athlete you've become and the hours of practice and the coaches who have pushed you is a little girl who fell in love with the game and never looked for her." This quote by Mia Hamm is what inspires me. I remember failure after failure as a kid, and I remember all the people who told me I couldn't or wasn't good enough. Those people and memories are what inspires me to play and continue getting better even when things seem too hard.- Hannah Shields

Jordan CaseyI play softball for the little girl who fell in love with the game. I continue to play because it has been my whole life and I wouldn't know what else to do without it. Many people inspire me to play, my dad being one of them. He put the first baseball in my hands when I was a baby. He is my biggest fan and I strive to make him proud of me. A bible verse that keeps me going is Colossians 3:23 "Whatever you do, work at it with all of your heart, as if working for the Lord, not for human masters." I believe I was made to play softball and this verse helps me to push myself everyday to get better.- Jordan Casey

Mika Lumsden"When you've got something to prove, there's nothing greater than a challenge." This quote by Terry Bradshaw sums up what inspires me to play. I play to have fun and also to prove that I am an athlete deserving of playing at the D1 level. With that, all the values I've learned by playing softball such as hard work and perseverance can be used in other aspects of my life.- Mika Lumsden

Micaela Cummings
What inspires me to play is the people I have been surrounded with. I grew up in a family ruled by softball. Both of my sisters went to play ball at the D1 collegiate level. The way both of them have always respected the game and played with passion throughout ups and downs of their careers has inspired me to want to play the way they always have and to show respect for the endless opportunities it has provided me.- Micaela Cummings

Jessica Shalongo"I can do all things through Him who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13. This bible verse reminds me to work hard not only for myself, but for my teammates. My family inspires me to work hard and play the game which ultimately gives me the opportunity to make them proud. That is something I strive to accomplish everyday. I know they are not looking for results, rather the strength I have to work hard and dedicate myself to the game. For this reason I eliminate self doubt and believe that through the difficulties I face, I have support and the strength I need to overcome any obstacles I face.- Jessica Shalongo.

What inspires you to be great? What motivates you to keep going?

Keep watch every Monday for a new blog from your DSU Hornet Softball Team