Here’s more from Marty Myers’ interview with the final Athlete of the Week for the 2016-17 school year, Mid Valley’s Abbie Mills.
Sports teams you follow: New York Yankees, but that’s about it.
Why did you want to go to the state final to see the team Pine Grove played? I wanted to see who we could have possibly played and see how they do, if they do better or worse than they did against us.
Did you catch because your dad was a Jorge Posada fan? I don’t remember exactly why I started, but I do remember at one point our catcher for our rec league team didn’t want to catch anymore. I said I’d try it and I fell in love. I think that’s why I like it. Everything is going on and as catcher you get to see the whole game.
Three hits in your final game. That’s a pretty good swan song. I knew I wasn’t playing in college, so this year had to be it for me. I wanted it to go as well as it could. Sometimes it just works out that way. I was thankful it ended on such a good note because now I can look back and be happy about ending on a high note. To be up there, everything I’ve put in the last four years has finally paid off to be better than I was a couple years ago.
What was it like to be part of a team that made a run like this? We want the same thing, and it’s so easy to play with them because you know you’re going after the same goal. We’re not in it for ourselves. We’re in it for the team as a whole. It was really incredible to see how far we got by following that mentality.
Teammate who improved the most, last season to this season. I would say Lacy Harrington or Mackenzie Mitchko. Lacy worked really, really hard and her batting is incredible. She works so hard on it in the offseason and it really showed. Mackenzie worked her butt off and she really wanted it. Both of those girls are incredible.
This was a big step for Mid Valley softball. What was it like to be part of that legacy? The team this year and last has come so far and I think it goes back to that mentality that we aren’t in it for ourselves. My freshman year — this is bad to say this — there were people there who weren’t fully into it. This year, everyone’s in it to win. It’s been a great run and I couldn’t be more proud of my team.
How about one moment from your sports career that stands out? Probably the District 2 final win over Holy Redeemer. Because I skipped Disney World (senior class trip), it made it worth it. It was pretty cool to see everyone show up and cheer us on. It was great. I like to think of myself as a team player. I would give everything for my team. I did this because I wanted to be there, my team needed me and it worked out.
Who’s been the most influential person in your athletic career? Assistant coach Glenn Ford. He really helped me with my catching up through last year.
Were there any funny moments at practice or is it pretty much all business? It was an April Fools joke. We have three practice shirts for the year and we cut the sleeves off one, but we bought identical ones. Our coaches freaked out and they were so mad. It was funny because Coach (Michael) Piercy looked at us and he walked right out of the gym. He wanted no part of it, and he didn’t believe us that we would go through all the trouble to buy new shirts.
Class clowns on the team would be … Emily Morano and Karissa Kalinoski. They play the game when they need to, but they are funny.
What’s the best lesson you’ve ever learned through sports? My dad always used to tell me, “Don’t count your chickens before they’re hatched.” Take it one game at a time, one pitch at a time. That’s been my mentality throughout.
What are your plans for this fall? I’m going to attend Loyola (Md.) to major in marketing.