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prettytough_squareThis week marks our very first Sporty Saturday Spotlight. Jersey Girl softballer, Lauren Lesser, shares with us her thoughts on teammates, injuries, softball, and balancing it all. Check out Lauren’s insightful interview below. And be sure to stop by Pretty Tough every Saturday to check out  interviews with sporty girls like you from across the country. Enjoy! :)

Name: Lauren Lesser

Age: 15

Sport(s): Softball and Field Hockey

Hometown: Mt. Laurel, New Jersey

High School/Middle School/College: Holy Cross High School

Number: 40

Position: I’m a pitcher and short stop for my softball team, and I protect the net as a back for my field hockey team.

What’s your fave sport? Softball! :)

How many years have you been playing your fave sport?

I started playing softball on a team 10 years ago, but I first picked up a ball and bat much earlier than that!

What was your fave sporty moment?

My favorite sporty moment definitely wasn’t my fave when it happened, and it actually didn’t even happen while I was playing!  I injured my ankle and had to have several surgeries along with months of casts, crutches, and doctor appointments.  After my first surgery I went to watch a softball tournament and every single one of my teammates either came up to me before or after the game telling me about games I missed or informing me that my nickname was about to change to something that related to being injured.  Even though I couldn’t be on the field, it was great to feel the sense of being part of a team and knowing I had a group of friends to put a smile on my face.

What was the biggest lesson you’ve learned from playing your sport?

The importance of teamwork and support of one another!  The way you treat your teammates and how well you work together really affects the way you play and your relationship with one another.  No matter how big of an error someone may make or how many times someone strikes out, you have to keep motivating your teammates and refrain from getting frustrated or annoyed.  By caring for only yourself and not working well with the others on your team you’re only hurting yourself in the long run and meanwhile you are also hurting your team.

What lessons have you learned about work ethic from your sport?

By playing sports I have learned how important it is to give 100% in everything I do along with responsibility.  It’s not fair to your team if you decide not to give it your all because you stayed up late and you’re tired or something along those lines.  You have to learn to be responsible enough to do what is best for yourself while keeping your team’s best interest in mind.

What have you learned about teamwork?

Teamwork is key!  If you and your teammates don’t act as a team, you’re not going to play as a team.  You should be a personal cheerleader to every single one of your teammates whether you’re best friends with them or not.  Rather than being angry and aggravated when someone makes a mistake, you should brush it off and try to keep the other person from getting frustrated.  It doesn’t matter how well you play yourself if your team doesn’t play well together.

How do you balance school and sports?

School has always been very high on my priority list, especially after my injury this year.  I’m in honors classes at my high school which require a lot of hard work and very little time for sports and fun, and there have been quite a few times where I have stayed up extremely late to finish up a project or homework that should have been done well in advance.  I try to make deadlines for myself to force myself to get my work done so I’m not scrambling at the last minute.  I also try to get ahead of school work on days I don’t have practice or games.  The time management skills that I’ve learned over the years from sports helped me a lot this year when I had to make up the work I missed when I had my surgery.

Who’s your fave athlete, both male and female?

Jennie Finch and Jamie Moyer! :)

What’s the girliest thing you like to do?

I love painting my nails and reading teen Chick Lit!

Thanks, Lauren!! I’m definitely with you on the value of teamwork, giving 100%, and loving Chick Lit. :)

Happy Labor Day!

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