Softball Team Blog: Courtney Bradshaw On Sweeping WKU

Junior Courtney Bradshaw updates this week's team softball blog as the Mean Green starts to prepare for the conference tournament.

April 30, 2010

Last weekend we got our first sweep in conference against Western Kentucky. It was great to finally come out and take three games after winning 2 out of 3 in almost all of our other series. In the first game, I hit my first walk-off home run ever! I was so excited I didn't even realize the game was over. The second game went just as well, and the third game on Sunday ended with a huge play at the plate to clinch the win and the sweep. It was awesome to finish our last home series with three W's, especially for the seniors.

Everyone had a great weekend, and everything was working together perfectly. Now we head to conference tournament to add some more wins to our record and hopefully come back with some championship rings. Everyone wants that gold, so we're going to go get some!



Courtney Bradshaw #5



 

April 27, 2010

"Hotdogs! Get  your hotdogs and peanuts!" The sound of a day at the ballpark and the smell of the fried foods mixed with the smell of the freshly cut grass bring back memories of going to watch my hometown team play on those hot summer days and nights. On Tuesday we were able to go to Mean Green Day at the ballpark and watch the Texas Rangers play in Arlington.  

It felt like I was home again watching baseball with my friends.  Oh wait, I was home!  I love going home and not actually going home.  This is the second time, since we also play UTA. It was great for the girls to actually see what my town is like and experience what I do almost every day in the summer. 

My favorite parts were watching Coach Johnny Jones throw out the ceremonial first pitch, singing "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" with all my teammates, and watching the dot race.  The Rangers winning the game 4-2 was icing on the cake of an awesome night.   Some game highlights were CJ Wilson starting, Matt Treanor hitting a solo home run, and Wilson getting out of a bases-loaded jam in the 6th inning.

After the game was an experience as well.  Since we decided to take a trolley to the game, we had to wait on it for a pretty long while.  The first bus that came only loaded 15-20 people, not even to full capacity.  Another bus came about 25 minutes later and we crammed on.  Everyone that was left in line, about 50 people, squished onto this tiny bus, it was definitely a sight to see and be a part of.  Then once we got to the vans, we had to stop at three different gas stations in order to find a working restroom. All in all, it was a great night and something I can't wait to do again!

Amber Miller #17




April 7-14

It was Wed., April 7, 2010 and the Mean Green softball team was at it again, playing the No. 24-ranked team Baylor. That whole week we had been preparing for these two games we were about to play.

Our blood was flowing and our hearts were racing as the first pitch of the game was thrown. Our offense took it, starting off the game with hits coming from all over the lineup. Clutch defense and executing at the plate was what surprised them the most. The best part about it was that they feared us, they were scared to lose to us and we knew it. We took those two games out from under them and they didn't even know what hit them. Our pitching, defense, offense, and coaching were all there. We worked as a unit and got the job done both times.

With those two wins we traveled home winners.We came out the next day at practice wanting more, we knew we couldn't lose track of Middle Tennessee that coming weekend, and we wanted to take a few conference wins with us too. Saturday came and our momentum from Baylor came with us. Taking both the first and second games we were rolling and we didn't want it to end. I hit my first home run of the season and, boy, it was well needed. That feeling of an effortless hit traveling over the fence is one of the best feelings the game of softball can give you. To work so hard and finally have it pay off is a joy in itself.

My family had come to visit that week from home in California and they got to celebrate my first home run with me. Although we didn't take the final game of the series on Sunday we played well. We have been focusing at practice to improve the skills we need to work on for this coming weekend against Troy. Hopefully we bring our brooms this weekend to sweep Troy at their home field this weekend again as we did last year.

 



April 2

We are in Florida this weekend playing FIU, and we have some down time so I'm practicing my procrastination skills by surfing the internet and jamming to Taylor Swift!! Seriously, she's my absolute favorite. Currently, my volume is as loud as it can go and I'm singing at the top of my lungs. Curly, Kayla, and Renae rotate singing with me and telling me to be quiet. But, really, I LOVE TAYLOR SWIFT!!! I'm probably her number one fan. No lie.

She came to Dallas to perform on September 25, 2009, and ever since I found about it in April, I was constantly reminding the girls about it and was trying to drop hints that I wanted to go. The date came closer and closer, and my hints became less and less subtle. Finally the week of the concert came, and the girls were still telling me they didn't get any tickets for it. I thought they were planning a huge surprise for me so I played along with them telling me that they "didn't get any tickets."

Friday, September 25, came and we had weights. I was super excited throughout weights and was saying how I didn't have "any plans" for that night. Curly broke the news to me that they hadn't gotten me any tickets and I really wasn't going to go. I was pretty upset for the day and trudged to class at ten. On my way to the bus, I received a text from Jessica Lynn, a former player. She asked me what my plans were for the night and I told her I had no plans. Her next text made my life: "I have two tickets to the Taylor Swift concert tonight. Do you want them?" I started jumping up and down, laughing and smiling. I called pretty much everyone I knew and told them the news. I practically floated through the remainder of the day and through practice.

Finally, Kayla and I left for the concert. We bought our concert shirts and took our seats just as Kellie Pickler took the stage. AND THEN TAYLOR SWIFT CAME ON!!!!! She rocked the concert! I was so pumped. But the best part of the concert and a mile marker in my life was when she came down to our section and I HUGGED HER!!!! Seriously, one of the top ten moments of my life. I was so happy. It's ridiculous, but she's one of my role models.

So I pretty much love Taylor Swift. I listen to her music before every game, buy her songs as soon as they come out, and know all the words to her songs. Three years ago, the girls met her in an airport, and my goal before I graduate is to do the same. I have a feeling that if we met, we would be the  best of friends. Until then, I have nineteen wonderful sisters and best friends who love and support me through everything, even though they never got me those tickets.

Jessica Shields  #1

 



March 15-21

Spring break! Most college students get to experience a spring break at the beach, tan lines and toes in the sand, and sleeping in just to go back out. But not college softball players. We started our spring break off by traveling to Louisiana Monroe to play our first conference series. The weather was nice and we fought hard to make sure we came out on top for the weekend. We won the series and we were soon ready to take on anyone who stepped on the field to challenge our talent.

Who was next? The University of Texas. Once again we fought hard and our pitching and defense helped us to  beat the Longhorns,1-0.

Our practice days were spent waking up early to condition, practicing for a good couple hours, and then lifting after. We worked hard during practices with the mind set of sweeping South Alabama. But, the weather took a toll on us and decided to snow our last couple days of spring break, forcing us to cancel our games against South Alabama. Although we weren't lounging by a pool or tanning at the beach it was not a bad spring break at all. We proved we are just as good as any team out there and we certainly gained a much needed load of confidence I know we will carry with us the rest of the season.


Lesley Hirsch #3



 
March 12

So it's Thursday night and my roommates and I are doing our laundry to get ready for our first conference series. We leave tomorrowand head out to Louisiana Monroe where we will play two games on Saturday and one on Sunday.

From the beginning of the fall, everyone has worked extremely hard practicing what they needed to work on in order to do their jobs the best they could when game time came around. Conference play is where it's at. Of course every game matters to us, but the outcome of conference games is what makes or breaks you. There is different kind of feeling when you start conference. The rivalry between teams is intense, and you know that each and every game you are fighting for something-- a spot in the conference tournament.

As a senior, you realize that there won't be too many more times that you get to travel with all of your friends and play the game that you've loved since you were a kid. Riding on a bus for several hours may sound like an unpleasant thing to do, but the bus rides are where some of our best memories happen. There have been countless inside jokes, movie watching, studying, and hours of chatting with teammates.

One of my favorite times is when everyone gets into game mode and listens to their music on our way from the hotel to the field. You can feel the seriousness and excitement in the atmosphere. I can't wait to get on the bus tomorrow with all of my teammates; this weekend we won't only be playing for each other, the coaches and the school but for all the girls that took part in getting this program to where it is now.

Ashley Lail #4




February 12-15


The first game of the season was very exciting and the bus trip was interesting; we didn't get to Nacogdoches until an hour to an hour and a half before game time. Sometimes things do not go as planned and you have to just find a way to get focused and be flexible and get ready to play. Even with all the nerves and distractions we started off the season with a win against Stephen F. Austin, winning 7-0. We knew we couldn't let up on the Ladyjacks the second game, but the outcome was not what we wanted.

This past weekend we hosted our Sleep Inn Classic tournament here at Lovelace stadium. We had some good teams in the tournament and were expecting to win every game we played. In the games that we lost we had some errors and left runners on that really hurt us, but we also had some moments where people stepped up and got the job done. This past weekend is gone but not forgotten. We can look back and know that was not what North Texas softball looks like. We have to fix the things that need to be fixed so that we can reach the goals that we have set out for the year. We are looking forward to playing in the San Antonio tournament this weekend and winning some games.

Mariza Martinez #14



February 11

It's Thursday and we are trapped in Denton. Today was supposed to be our first game of the 2010 season. As of 10:00 pm last night, while stressing over packing, we found out our flight was canceled and we would be flying out at 6:45 am on Friday (meaning we will be arriving at the locker room around 4:00 am to head to the airport).  The excitement of our first game is getting to be more and more everyday as we have to wait.

Getting ready for our first tournament has been exciting but stressful at times. We will be missing class and have to make sure everything is taken care of before we fly out of town. Packing alone is one of the most stressful things about traveling. We double and triple check before we zip up our suitcases, making sure we have all of our uniforms and equipment that will needed for the weekend. Even after we have triple checked, once we board the plane, all we can think about is "do we have everything we need?"

Preseason workouts and practice have been tough but worthwhile. Every day we have been on the field working hard to get us ready for that first game of the year. The weather has been rough in January and February, but it can only prepare us for the worst weather during the season. The rain has put us inside for hitting and workouts pretty frequently, but nothing has stopped us from pushing everyday to get better. This is going to be an awesome season and I am so excited it is finally here. This is what we wait for every year. Hopefully we will be able to fly out Friday morning and play our first game against SFA.

Anna Barren #2




January 24-30

 

I was very nervous coming into college as a student-athlete because I had so many things that I wanted to excel at. I wanted to do my part on the softball field and contribute to achieving our goal this year as conference champions and beyond, but I also wanted to excel in the classroom.

I thought there wouldn't be enough time to practice and study, and at first it took a lot of getting use to. You can't procrastinate like back in high school, but being a student-athlete has its perks. I received a lot of help from my teammates who were in a higher Spanish classes than me or who had already taken my science class, and there was always another athlete in my class who shared my weird schedule so we would study together after our practices.

This semester I'm taking this cool Physics lab that allows me to come in anytime during the day and learn hands-on about many tools used in labs I hope to work in some day. I'm also taking a Political Science class and one activity had me interviewing students on campus about their view of politics, instead of my teacher just lecturing the information to me, and having so many teammates willing to help really added to my paper.

I thought every class in college would just be boring lectures, but I love how the teachers allow me to learn by relating things to real life and allowing me to discover things on my own. With only a week until our first game, I am glad I have flexible teachers who realize the importance of softball to me and this school.

Brittany Taylor  #10





January 13 - 22

Break is over and crunch time begins. Softball season is among us and pre-season is just the beginning. With all the girls excited and anxious for the season to come, we began our spring lives as the North Texas softball team. The first week was the hardest, with three-a-days to four-a-days, to the most surprising, our first five-a-day.

The training room is always packed with all of us heating and icing our legs, arms, backs, and shoulders before and after practice hoping to regain feeling in our bodies. The soreness and aching are nothing compared to the drive and heart we have to get us through season. Each of us just as excited as our teammate standing next to us ready to take on anything the season has to offer.

School started and our lives began to get a little more hectic. With our days revolving around school and practice, we begin to remember what it means to be student-athletes. Waking up in the early morning for weights then rushing to the bus to get to class on time, we have no time to stop. After lunch we all make our way to the field for practice, and then home to eat and study. That is what I would call a daily routine of a softball student athlete. 

I look forward to seeing what this season brings us. We have twenty days till our first game, and with each passing day our anticipation grows and we become more and more excited.

Renae Bromley # 8



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