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Each year we see a different trend of TV shows or movies that the girls on the team like to watch. This year, Pitch Perfect is the movie of choice as we have one or two good singers on the team … and some not so good singers that still like to belt it out. However, while Pitch Perfect is holding its own, scary movies are starting to creep into the mix with a not-so-gentle push from Coach DeFeo.

We landed in Houston Thursday and stopped for a quick bite to eat. Our coaches got to talking to a lady in the restaurant and she told them an old tale about the road we were soon to be traveling down. She said there was a lady who haunts the road and is wearing all white. Supposedly when it is really dark you can see her ghostly figure from the car. Naturally, Coach DeFeo tried to scare us a little bit and may have exaggerated when she said the ghost would hop in the car. Over the next hour, the car ride to the hotel was spent retelling scary stories and talking about which movies frightened us the most. Personally, I jump when someone says boo, let alone when a possessed human being walks out of the woods, so I want to say thank you to my van for the wonderful bedtime stories. Regardless, I think we are all looking forward to the future bus trips when Coach puts in a horror film to entertain us.

We have taken a lot of plane rides and pretty much have the seating chart down pat. Typically we are all bunched together as one group at the back of the plane, but there is the rare occasion when we are spread out up and down the aisles. On our flight to Houston this past weekend, I was in the middle seat between two middle-aged gentlemen. On planes, you never know if you are going to get: the guy that hogs the arm rest, the lady who can’t seem to shake a cough, or the screaming kid who likes to kick your seat from behind. I got lucky this time around. When I got to talking with one of the men, I learned he was about to retire from the Navy where he served as a pilot. We talked nonstop for the entire two and half hour flight. He enlightened me as he told stories about being in the military and he bragged about his daughter, as all good dads do. I shared a little bit about softball and my own life. He kept saying how he was sorry he was taking me away from my homework. (I kept insisting that it was truly okay because I’m a Public Relations major and we like to talk).
In honor of this man, instead of a question of the week, comment below or tweet @PurdueSoftball with a thank you or shout out to anyone you know who has served or is currently serving our country. It is important that we recognize the sacrifice made by them and their families and that we offer a firm handshake when we have the chance.

Next week we are back on another flight to Texas; heading to San Marcos this time around. Keep your eyes on purduesports.com for updates.

Oh and the dancer on the team is freshman pitcher Lilly Fecho. If you guessed wrong, don’t worry, we didn’t expect it either.

-AC

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As a Division I softball team, we are fortunate enough to get to travel around the United States experiencing different campuses, climates and cities.  This past weekend we definitely got a good glimpse of Tucson.  
We rent four vans each weekend when we fly.  Each player is assigned a certain van with a coach and everyone’s luggage goes in the 15 passenger van that our SID drives.  This weekend, however, we were thrown for a loop when the coaches pulled up to the airport curb with a two 15 passenger vans, an SUV, and a pickup truck.  It’s not how we usually roll, but we went with it.  I ended up riding shotgun in the truck with Coach Stephenson, Maia, Rains, and Burk.  Talk about a power truck.  For those of you who don’t know Coach S, she is very entertaining and provided us with many laughs and life insights.  
Many of those laughs came as we got our own personal tour of Tucson, Ariz., because we went thirty minutes farther to a restaurant when one was located about five minutes off campus.  But, those thirty minutes were worth every second because we ended up eating at Beyond Bread (thanks to a fellow Boilermaker for the recommendation).  To the Beyond Bread franchise, please make a home in West Lafayette and thank you for the three fabulous meals we consumed over the weekend, as well as the quick service and great people.  
We have a handful of California kids on our team and whenever we get the chance to go west, they beg for In-N-Out.  As we were headed to the field on Friday, we missed a turn and detoured through the In-N-Out parking lot.  Even for an Indiana kid, that’s cruel.  I can only imagine the heartbreak from a few of our most devoted In-N-Out eaters.  
We have a lot of talent on our team, but that’s not only on the softball field.  As it turns out, we have found we have another dancer on the team.  A certain freshman’s good moves gave us some laughs and excitement to play.  There are five to pick from. Let us know who you think it was?  Send your vote via Twitter @PurdueSoftball or comment below.  
Right now we stand at .500 and next weekend won’t be a walk in the park.  We have a quick turnaround before heading back down to Indy to catch a flight to College Station, Texas, but we are ready to make a statement at A&M.

-AC

Week one is in the books …

February 11, 2013

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Weekend one at LSU is in the books. Our 2-3 record doesn’t reflect our potential. We did some great things defensively. We show a lot of promise in the circle. Our bats are there.

First, the question of the weekend: Would you be a vampire or a werewolf given the choice? The argument for werewolf is being able to age and function in the real world more normally, while savaging around in your spare time. Those who say vampire are pulling for speed, strength, and immortality. Personally, I’d fall on the vampire side for the ability to climb at a rapid pace and, of course, the impeccable skin. (Disclaimer: this conversation did not stem from talking about Twilight). Give us your vote with a comment below or a tweet @PurdueSoftball.

After four years of traveling with Purdue softball, I have visited a lot of airports. Typically we have study tables, a quick layover, and lots of naps on the plane. We look ridiculous carrying so many bags up to the check-in desk. And we always get asked the question, “What sport do you play?” It never fails. No matter how short we are, we are always asked if we are the basketball team. It’s February and people just aren’t ready to accept that fact that it is softball season in Indiana. That’s why we fly south for the winter.

Softball season opens up the first weekend after the Super Bowl. The past three years, we have taken off that particular weekend and built up a little more eagerness to play. This year, Coach Maher did not think that was necessary because we have all been chomping at the bit to get back on the field since May. Opening with LSU was exciting for us because the juniors and seniors have played there before and we knew how great their facilities are. After being inside for four months, we haven’t seen a bad hop from a ground ball because of the turf field. LSU has a great field so it was a nice transition. Plus, it’s time for Mardi Gras!!! Friday night after a late game, all we wanted to do was get to Wendy’s for our food and get to the hotel for a shower and bed. However, the fine people of Baton Rouge thought we should experience the culture of the south and trapped us in a parade. Trying to get four vans through a parade of people was not exactly easy. No beads for us, but it was a great people watching experience.

Next week, we are back in action at the University of Arizona. Five more opponents to play, including Nebraska, one of the Big Ten’s own. Next weekend’s opposition went 13-12 during the first round of games, but it will be about us. We are one victory away from #600 in program history. Check out purduesports.com for updates and follow @PurdueSoftball on twitter.

-AC