Southern Vermont College’s Hidden Gem

The Looking Glass

By Meagan Fleming

Seventeen tired but excited women sit on the floor of the Southern Vermont College athletic center at 6 a.m., stretching and getting ready for their first practice of a new season. The new players wait for directions so they can prove they are worth a spot on the team. The returning players are more relaxed, remembering the highs and lows of last year, but still remembering
that their spots can be taken easily.

Past, Present and Future

These seventeen women are getting ready to play the 2013 season of fast pitch softball. This season is special one for SVC’s women’s softball team. During a recent interview, the Sophomore pitcher, Emily Fleming said, “We have the potential to be one of strongest teams in the history of the program. In past seasons the softball team struggled when it came to wins
and losses, but we have hope for a bright future.”

Last season’s team went 3-15 in their NECC conference and 6-32 in total. Although wins and losses are important to any team, the head coach, Leanne Baker, does not just look at numbers to decide if a season is successful. She explained, “Success is not only shown through the wins and losses of a program, but also the lessons taken away from the game.”

Baker recognizes the challenges the team will face. “I think that if we make it through the first two weeks with confidence then this team has the talent and potential to make a good run in the NECC playoffs,” she stated. Baker believes that first two weeks are critical
because they will be facing some of the most skilled teams in the NECC conference.

Who makes the magic?

Like any sports team, the members of the team play the biggest role in its success. Leanne Baker mentioned Junior outfielder, Erika Garay, as, “most reliable fielder and also a constant positive force among the team.”

Baker also praised Fleming, when she said, “Emily’s facial expression never changes on the mound even when the team behind her is struggling.”

Fleming also spoke to the talent on the team. She said, “Every player on the team is crucial. Not one person stands out and that is what makes us so strong. We are all super stars on this team and we do our best to make each other shine,” but there is still something missing.

What is missing?

The only thing the softball team is missing is support. Fleming explained what she saw in the stands at home games last year when she said, “Most girls would see their parents, siblings, and close friends but we don’t see nearly the same support from students as other teams on campus. We know our parents care; we want the school to care.”

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The 2013 Southern Vermont College Women’s Softball team posing for a team photo on a staircase in the SVC Mansion. From bottom to top, Rachel Robtoy, Vanessa Ruelas, Erika Garay, Nathalie Ruelas, Katie Raymond, Julianna Burnley, Hannah Cross, Hayley McDonald, Jenn Sicinski, Shelby Jones, Emily Fleming, Meagan Fleming, Kirstin Buchan, Liz Simonowicz, Brianne Nichols, and Sarah Kennedy.
Photo by Michael Nosek