In the April print issue of tjTODAY, the publication featured sophomore Molly Schindler, a first-year member of the varsity softball team who decided to fill up the vacant pitcher position for the team. Throughout the season, Schindler specifically focused on the training for the position, allowing sophomore Diana Zavela, an experienced pitcher of the team, to participate in the games.
Since the report, Jefferson’s softball team played a total of 17 games, concluding its spring season on May 12 with a game against Marshall High School.
Despite the lack of pitchers, the team brought back four wins this season, showing an improvement from the past, in which the team scored two wins and two ties in the 2013 spring season. Especially during the last weeks, the team scored three consecutive wins, scoring a record of 16-3 against Thomas Edison High School, 17-10 against Falls Church High School and 8-7 against Wakefield High School. The team did not play against Thomas Edison and Wakefield High Schools during the last season.
“I really enjoyed being the pitcher, although the season was really hard because there was no one else that could pitch,” Zavela said. “Molly Schindler is learning how to pitch this season, and we hope she can pitch next year.”
Throughout the entire season, Zavela attended all of the games to play as the pitcher. Although the season experienced many rescheduling of games due to rain, the team had the opportunity to play at the playoffs after the regular season was over.
“I pitched every inning of every game,” Zavela said. “Although it was disappointing to lose in the playoffs, we had a good season.”
The team did not have new pitchers for the team for the past two years, which urged the team to actively search for students who were willing to train themselves for the position. Although Zavela had been a part of softball teams as a pitcher for five years, Schindler was first introduced to the team in her freshmen year,
“One of my friends actually convinced me to join softball,” Schindler said. “When we came to tryouts, I liked the sport more than I had others at TJ. The team started out with one experienced pitcher this year, Diana Zavela, and the more pitchers you have one the team the better, because each offers a unique skill set.”
As the team reflects on the spring season prepares for future ones, the pitchers hope to bring positive results by developing their skills and adding greater support for the team.
“The hardest part for me is convincing myself that I can do it and trusting myself to pitch, because having that mentality is a key to success,” Zavela said.