Sometimes you can just tell that a certain young athlete is special. You can tell by the way she talks with adults AND teammates. You can tell by how she acts when she's off the diamond. You can tell by the ease of her movements on the diamond. I remember seeing Paige Hall in the LLSBWS and thinking she was a special young athlete.
The daily Oregonian offered a story yesterday on the now-high-school-junior who led her team to a state championship last year and later discovered a heart condition that required surgery last Thanksgiving. Her courage and resiliancy are a credit to her and her family.
And she also credits her experience at the Little League Softball World Series for providing that spark to devote energy to her sport and a goal to pitch at the college level. She has already verballed to Oregon State, who are currently ranked no. 15 in the nation.
Know what's even cooler? I have seen her back up at Alpenrose during the following tournaments enjoying the games and greeting fans and friends.
She's a class act, and almost makes me want to root for her team, the Jesuit Crusaders, even though I played softball for cross-town rival, Beaverton!