Young makes name for herself on diamond

Senior catcher Kathryn Young has made a name for herself behind the plate. She and the Lions have started the season with a 3-1 record.

UNA softball catcher Kathryn Young, a senior and leader for the softball team, was recently named a pre-season All-GSC selection. After a 3-1 start, Young said she has big goals for herself and her team.

“Individually, my goals would be to start out strong, but get stronger as I go,” Young said. “In the past few years, I started out strong, but by the conference tournament I was dwindling a little bit, but this year I would really like to be more consistent for my team and know that once we go further into the season, I’ll be able to get better.”

The team goals this year are a little different. The current situation with conference play and getting into the GSC tournament is simple: every GSC team gets an invite, but winning conference games will be key to having a higher seed in the tournament, Young said.

“First of all, we know we all get to go to conference this year, but we want to have a really good show in con good show in conference play and do well in our GSC games before we get to the conference tournament,” she said. “We have the talent to do it, we have the players and we have a great team this year, so what we really want to do is work hard and do well in the conference games and tournament and make it past that.”

An aspect of any athletic event is what comes before the game actually starts—the pre-game routine. Many athletes have superstitious acts they do before they hit the field, court or track. Pre-game and post-game meals also play a part in the game routine for collegiate athletes.

“I love to eat chicken and dumplings; my mother makes the best chicken and dumplings,” Young said. “As a post-game meal though, we go to Outback a lot with my family. I usually order a wedge salad and a steak. The night before a game, I’m always nervous.

“I’ve played my whole life, but the jitters never go away. All day long on game day, I’m excited. We get ready by listening to music in the locker room; I like to warm-up my pitchers and see what’s working. I think my love for the game is pretty much what gets me ready to play every time.”

Even athletes enjoy their fast food.

“McDonald’s, definitely,” Young said. “I have a dream of someday starting a McDonald’s buffet. I adore McDonald’s. For Christmas, I got an Arch card.”

Young said her parents have always set a great example for her and her older sister, and encouraged them to succeed.

“I have an amazing family; my parents are the most hardworking people and have taught my sister and me more than we can ever thank them for,” she said. “They really earn everything they have, care about people, and try to do their best or the right thing no matter what it is.”

Young said she couldn’t pinpoint one specific memory as her favorite at UNA in her four years, but the experience as a whole has been humbling and life changing.

“I think my best memory will probably be everything together, the overall feel of everything: of growing, of how fast time flies,” she said. “I cannot believe four years ago yesterday was my first college softball game, and now I’m a senior. I’ve gotten to live out my dream, playing ball while going to school, I’ve gotten engaged, and I’ll be an aunt here soon all in the short period of time at UNA. I’m so thankful to have had the experience.”