By: Hung Tat
Kenley is a junior, she has been playing baseball since she was very young and she is a part of the softball team here at Cyprus. She is a pitcher and plays outfield. This is currently her third year on the team!
How did you get started with softball and why do you do it?
Growing up, both of my older sisters played softball, so I decided to try it out when I was 8! I fell in love with it and still love it after playing for the last 10 years!
Is it hard managing school, work, and softball? How do you do it?
It does get hard to balance both school and softball at times, so I try to take advantage of free time at school to get work done and set aside time after softball or on the weekends to study and do homework.
Do you plan on continuing softball after high school? Explain
I haven’t decided if playing college softball is something I’m interested in yet. I plan on continuing to play in tournaments and showcases with my travel team over the next year and keep an open mind toward any opportunities that come my way. Then decide if I want to either play softball in college or go to college just for academics.
What do you like about your team?
Something I like about my team is that we are constantly working hard and improving every game. High school softball is sometimes hard to adjust to because there is a new group of girls every year, but I think we have done a great job at coming together and not only getting to know each other personally but also as players. As we’ve gotten more comfortable playing with each other, we have improved not only how we play but also our team culture.
What makes you proud of CHS and your team?
Something that makes me proud of CHS and my team are the great people I have met through school and through Cyprus softball. There are so many amazing teachers, coaches, and students at Cyprus that have taught me important lessons and helped me become a better student / person. As for Cyprus softball, I have made so many great friendships over the past three years that I hope to have for the rest of my life. My coaches are also amazing people that do a great job at representing the culture at Cyprus High School.
How has softball impacted you?
Softball has impacted my life in many ways! I have met so many amazing teammates and coaches throughout the years that have shaped who I am and have played very important roles in my life. Softball has also taught me a lot of lessons that I apply not only to softball but also to my daily life, such as how to react to failure, having confidence, working hard for what you want, working on a team, having a positive mindset, working under pressure, etc.
Who is someone in softball you look up to and why?
Someone in softball I look up to is my pitching coach, Alexis Switenko. She was an amazing softball player and played college softball at Syracuse University. She taught me how to pitch when I was 10 and I have been consistently working with her on my pitching and hitting for the last 7 years! She has played a huge role in helping me become the player I am today and I often go to her for both softball and life advice!
What is your core value of being a softball player?
My core value of being a softball player is having a purpose every time I step on the field. When I have a purpose, whether it’s to win, to be a good teammate, to work on something specific I have been struggling on, to give my 100% effort at all times, or anything else that motivates me, I find myself being able to give my all and to play to the best of my ability. My coach always tells us “If you’re going to be here, be HERE”, and that quote has inspired me to invest myself and give my all to everything I do in my life.
What is your best memory throughout softball?
I have so many memories from softball over the years that I can’t pick a specific event. However, some of my favorite softball memories consist of playing in intense, close scoring games, joking around with teammates in the dugout, going to dinner with my team after long tournaments, traveling to different states to play, and spending all day on the field. I have been blessed to be on several great teams with some of my best friends and have made so many great memories with them.
What else do you do besides softball when you have free time?
Softball takes up a lot of my time, but when I’m not playing, I like to spend time with friends and family, watch netflix, play tennis, read, take my dogs for walks, or go outside if the weather’s good!