Fourth-year student Grace Tritchler’s favorite part about softball is its ability to unite people and form friendships and lifelong bonds.
“I’ve met some of my best friends through this sport,” said Tritchler. “Especially here at Case [Western Reserve University].”
She also mentioned that she is close friends with current and former teammates, and has even roomed with the same group of teammates every year.
Additionally, her most memorable moments in the sport are directly associated with people and not with a singular event.
One example was “the last game of my sophomore season here at CWRU, and our pitcher (who had no at bats on the season) came up to bat in the bottom of the seventh inning and hit a walk off single to win the game,” said Tritchler. ”She is one of my best friends and that being her last collegiate softball game, it was emotional.”
She’s also continued softball because of her love of competition. She stated that she has a desire to compete at the highest level for as long as she can; after college, there is no coming back. Likewise, her passion for softball is a result of the intense competition inherent in the game.
Like all college athletes, Tritchler has an involved life off the field. She is a chemical engineering major, although she is not completely sure what she wants to pursue after graduation. Throughout her college career, she has been a member of Theta Tau, a professional engineering fraternity, even serving as vice president.
The career 0.355-hitter enjoys other activities outside of softball as well. When she’s home in Texas, Tritchler will go water-tubing down rivers, hiking or possibly bowling—all with friends, of course. However, she has spent her last two summers in Cleveland, where she has attended cultural or food festivals, concerts and visited the Metroparks. No matter where she happens to be, she is just like the typical college student: watching Netflix and napping.
Everyone usually has some sort of “motto” they live by, but a lot of times the same ones are repeated over and over again. Tritchler has a unique life quote: “Sometimes you gotta work a little, so you can ball a lot,” spoken by Tom Haverford in the popular show “Parks & Recreation.”
“It sounds ridiculous, but I think it’s actually a good thing to live by,” she said. “I’m not trying to take life super serious and never really live and experience things, but I also understand that it’s not just all fun and games.”
For her softball career, she has amassed 19 home runs, 96 runs batted in and 0.408 on-base percentage. In her 117 career games, she has only recorded 22 errors, for a 0.967 fielding percentage.
In her last year, Tritchler will look to lead the Spartans on the field while also furthering the relationships she has established that will last a lifetime. Maybe the “work” she has put in over the last three years will result in her “balling a lot” now.