April 7, 2010

Five Questions With Softball's Kristin Welsh

April 7, 2010

Sophomore Kristin Welsh has been a presence at the plate for the Broncos this season. As of April 7, 2010, she is batting .367 with two doubles, two home runs, a triple, and 10 RBIs.

1) This is your second season on the team. What do you think is the biggest difference between this year's and last year's team?
As a team we have a lot more chemistry compared to last year. We have really come together as a family and it shows on the field. When we know our teammates care about each other off the field, we play together on the field. We've also learned to really trust each player's individual talent and have been able to rely on each other this year.

2) Currently you are leading the team with a .367 batting average. What did you work on in the off-season to improve your consistency at the plate?
My biggest problems at the plate have been pitch selection and confidence. This fall and winter I really focused on trying to improve those two aspects because they were crucial to my offense. I would say just practice and with the coaches help to know my strike zone and constant reminders to have patience really helped my pitch selection. As for my confidence, the biggest problem was my nerves at the plate, especially in pressure situations. This winter I started singing songs in my head to relax at the plate, and my team likes to make jokes about it, but it really helps me stay focused and confident. This definitely helped my offense the most.

3) What would you say has been the best moment thus far for the team this season?
I would definitely say that our recent victories in the Stanford Invitational were a great turning point because it puts us in the right mindset for conference. After not playing as well as we would have hoped the weekend before at Stanford, it was a huge step for us to come back the next weekend and turn things completely around and show the teams we faced what kind of team Santa Clara really is. Our defeat of UOP was especially a great moment for our team because we had been unsuccessful against them all last year and this year.

4) Being from near Fullerton, Calif., and knowing that Cal State Fullerton has a pretty good softball reputation, was it special for you to have such a great game against the Titans? What did the win mean to the team that day?
It was extremely special for me to beat the Titans. My high school is less than five minutes away from Cal State Fullerton and many times we would go watch them play as a team. We would always hear and see how they were such a great team and how it would be such an honor to play there because you would have to be very talented. So to beat them meant so much to me - to prove my teammates were just as good or better than them. The star pitcher at my rival high school, Mater Dei, also pitched against us that day and to hit well against her in college was so rewarding because it was such a struggle in high school. Beating the Titans was not only rewarding for me, but for our entire team. Knowing that we are capable of beating a team with their reputation really gave us the confidence to feel that we could beat or compete with any opponent and win our conference this year.

5) What do you think is the best part about being a Bronco?
The resources available to us students are the best part of being a Bronco. We have such a beautiful campus, great professors who really show an interest in our studies and careers, as well as great connections for after we graduate. I feel so fortunate to attend Santa Clara; I've met so many great people that will be in my life for a very long time. I am grateful for that and the many more benefits Santa Clara will be offering in my future years here.