Softball is one of Gracelyn Massey’s biggest passions, and it has helped create many friendships and opened a few doors.
Massey has never been complacent with where she is at in her development, and she has risen up the ranks from a young freshman to a senior captain and leader for the Bulldogs.
She is a great role model for Princeton head coach Don Andrews to reference. He always reminds his players that great things come when you put in the work, and Massey is proof.
Massey, who will play at Barton College and major in nursing next year, reached where she is now thanks to her unyielding commitment to her craft.
“I’ve played since tee-ball, so I’ve been playing my whole life,” Massey said. “And I just knew that I wanted to play ever since I started playing softball.”
Massey quickly realized softball was something she should devote more time to. Before she entered high school, Massey learned the basics, which helped her sharpen her skills.
And through hours of training, Massey has developed into one of the best pitchers in the area.
As a freshman, she was a key contributor on a team that went 16-6 and reached the third round of the playoffs. She pitched 41.1 innings, had a 2-1 record on the mound with a .51 earned run average and 50 strikeouts.
She became the Bulldogs go-to pitcher as a sophomore, and the Bulldogs finished the season with a 14-4 record and reached the regional round of the playoffs.
Like so many student-athletes last season, Massey had her junior season cut short because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and Massey said it was difficult losing a season of her favorite sport.
“Losing last season hurt pretty bad. That was our year to win everything, but we just need to bounce back and play our hardest this season,” Massey said.
Massey and her teammates are back on the field this season. Her leadership, and her pitching, are also vital for the Bulldogs this season.
One of six seniors on the Bulldogs’ roster, Massey and the other seniors work hard to bring out the best in the team’s underclassmen.
Massey understands that softball can be an unpredictable game. There are ebbs and flows, highs and lows, just like there are in life, which is part of the reason Massey gravitates toward softball so much.
“It’s been the best experience. We are all really close, and it’s not just playing softball. It creates friendships and a lot of memories,” Massey said.
Softball brings people together, and that is what she is all about. Massey views every game as a blessing, and she knows what will never change.