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A Love Letter to Barrack Softball

Eliana Weinstein

Staff Writer

Some people celebrate the beginning of a new year by watching a ball drop in New York City. I celebrate the new year with a ball drop that takes place in Bryn Mawr, PA. When I step onto the softball field for the first game of a season, my heart leaps out of my chest and I feel alive again. As a passionate softball player, I can be spotted weekly in a blue and white softball hoodie, or a black Cougars t-shirt with a bat embellishing the front. Both of these tell a story about my love for the sport and my pride in my school. 

Beginning softball as a Barrack middle schooler, I became “in like” with the sport because it helped me get my energy out and make new friends. I was an athletic kid who always loved sports, but I had never played softball prior to the Barrack Middle School team. Working hard to achieve the goal of winning games, my middle school years of softball were fun, but that was not enough for me; I wanted to be a challenging competitor who could achieve excellence within the sport. To accomplish this goal I tried out for varsity softball in eighth grade. Making the team was a huge accomplishment, but my season was cut short. The COVID-19 pandemic halted what was supposed to be my chance to work with a more talented team and sharpen my skills. However, when I returned for freshman year I felt even more eager to play; I had forced my dad to have frequent catches with me, and I watched college softball any time I was off online school. My freshman season was fun, but it was also incredibly educational. Months of practicing at Tee’s batting cages flew by quicker than a fastball, and my sophomore softball season began. Although this season did not necessarily result in a lot of actual game victories, I had one of the most fun seasons of my athletic experience, as everyone on the team became very close. Then, junior year season rolled around, and the combination of fun and educational seasons that our team experienced truly built on themselves. The Softball Cougars were ready to face good teams and win. We were more victorious this season than we could have ever imagined, and although the team lost in the semi-finals, we had played our hearts out and taught me the importance of continuously pursuing hard work. 

The last game of my junior season brought me to tears because I knew that I would only have one more season playing Barrack softball. I went home that night and stared at my raggedy glove and shiny bat, and I admired my damp puffy eyes in my mirror -my “like” for Barrack softball had turned into love. The pain I was experiencing was an anticipated heartbreak that would occur in approximately one year. Now, of course, I can and most likely will play softball on a club team in college but it wouldn't be as a cougar anymore. When I woke up the next morning it was a Friday, and I attended school like normal. When school came to a close I drove home and re-entered my room which was still cluttered with softball gear from the night before. This time I looked into my mirror and with dry eyes regained some clarity. My senior year Barrack softball season will be the best because I am not just “in like” anymore, nor am I in love anymore; I am obsessed.


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