Athlete of the Month: Nancy Gray ’17

photo by <span class="credit credit- "><a href="/credit/"Max/" title="View all of this person's work">"Max</a></span>

photo by Max Shi

The PHS softball team will be tested this season with an underclassmen-filled roster. The few seniors on the team are all looking forward to having an exciting last few months. One of these seniors, Captain Nancy Gray ’17, has been an important player on the varsity squad since her freshman year, both as pitcher and shortstop.

“I started freshman year, and I made varsity, which was pretty exciting,” said Gray. “That was another year when we were a pretty young team.”

Prior to freshman year, Gray became involved with the game through her family and travel teams.

“I played tee-ball and [my dad] ran [the team] , then he started running [the] Princeton [Recreation program],” said Gray, “My sister [and I] got into it … I have [also] been playing travel softball my whole life.”

Gray was also able to contribute to the team’s growth individually with her years of travel team experience.

“I definitely came into the team with a solid foundation of how to play softball because I’d been playing travel,” said Gray. “It helped me with the team dynamic … I taught [underclassmen] how to play with the foundation I had.”

Gray, the four-year varsity player, also has her own goals for the team in her last season. She aims to enlist the help of her co-captains Christina Cuomo ’17 and Kayla Volante ’17 in strengthening the program through building a foundation with the underclassmen. This season, having a confident group of freshmen and sophomores will matter especially for this team

“Our goal is … bringing the younger team together and trying to develop the program … because we want the program to last,” said Gray.

Gray is also the catcher for the team. Off the field, Gray’s position on the team is also essential to the whole program.

“Her positive attitude is really beneficial to the team … she sets a good example,” said Cuomo. “And she’s all in all just a good player.”

Head Coach Marissa Soprano has spent several seasons coaching Gray and acknowledges Gray’s importance to the team in terms of the respect she receives from teammates as well as her optimistic attitude.

“The girls look up to [Gray],” said Soprano. “She knows how to get them excited about the season … [and] how to make the game fun.”

Gray’s extensive experience on varsity has allowed her to observe the growth of the team over her four-year career.

“We’ve gotten much closer as the years go on,” said Gray. “Our skills have developed … more [quickly] than they have in the past.”

Gray’s big take-away from her career on the softball team serves as a lesson for any other program.

“The team doesn’t have to be that amazing to have a great softball career,” said Gray, “I think it’s [important] that you make the best of what you have.”

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