New softball coach calls for attention

Amateur athletes play to participate, college athletes play to win. Winning isn't everything, but for the more competitive players, winning is the substantiation of their hard work. SMC softball, finishing the 2010 season without a single win, has been struggling to get their wheels turning. To ignite new fire and bring inspiration to the team, the SMC athletic department hired new head coach Char Wilson. Wilson comes to the program with 25 years of experience under her belt, and looks forward to setting a new standard for the team by bringing an experienced coaching style and changing the seriousness of the program.

"It was a good opportunity for me. They needed somebody who could give them consistency," said Wilson. The chance to be head coach was motivation enough after being an assistant for the past ten years.

"Softball is my life, every aspect of my life is about softball," said Wilson. "I eat, breathe, and sleep softball."

Aside from being head coach at SMC, she is the Southern California American Softball Association women's fast pitch commissioner. She is in charge of coordinating all of the summer-ball tournaments for top division athletes.

"It's tough, but rewarding in the same breath. I get to see all of the top athletes and that is all my doing," she said.

Wilson believes that SMC's softball program has been unsuccessful due to a lack of experienced coaching and a shortage of seriousness that people take the program. She emphasized that recruiting is going to be a key element in turning the program around.

By recruiting strong players and setting strict academic expectations, Wilson believes her athletes have a chance to go far in the sport.

"I take academics super seriously, I need serious student athletes," said Wilson. "I have connections to college coaches so I want to get them in and out."

With five returners and seven new athletes, Wilson describes her team as scrappy and ready to get the job done. In the few recent initial practices, she sees the hard work, focus, and determination that her new squad brings to the table. Wilson stated her key players look to be shortstop Rosie Magallon, pitcher Alyson Hermon, and centerfielder Taylor Simon-Garvey. " We've got the key spots to mold people around," she added.

The Corsairs may be underestimated, but the new skipper is willing to take on the challenge. Wilson said of the 2011 season's expectations, "Getting a ‘w' for sure, but beyond that, getting camaraderie within our sport, our school and our competition. We don't know the outcome, but we are going to give it our all."

SMC will open up the season with something to prove on their Jan. 29 debut.