Senior Softball Player Cherishes Personal Relationships

Jessica Oltman, Reporter

Brianna Holder, senior Catcher for the university’s softball team, looks to family and friends to help her through an unexpected senior season.

Holder started playing softball around the age of six or seven and said it has given her more than just a hobby since then.

“It’s the place where I go to forget about my problems. It is an outlet for me to release stress. It has given me life-long friends, learning experiences, and memories that I will always remember,” she said.

She emphasized how important it is for her to have life-long relationships, as they help her through tough times like the present day.

“My family and friends, especially my roommates and boyfriend, have been great to have by my side,” Holder said. “I know I can always go to them and talk if I am struggling or feeling down, and they have really made this difficult time so much better.”

The positivity she’s received from the people she is close to has also helped her greatly with how she is handling the pandemic.

“Whenever I start to complain about things or feel down about the situation, they always change my perspective on how I am seeing things into something so much more positive. Their outlook on life has made me reevaluate mine and adopt a new approach to how we are dealing with things,” she said.

As things start to wind down, and there is so much uncertainty about all upcoming seasons, Holder stresses how important it is for everyone to be smart and stay safe. There is a bigger picture and she said we all need to prioritize each other’s safety to give the seniors a fair shot at a final season.

“I know no one likes wearing a mask and distancing, but we have to prioritize what is important to us,” Holder said. “For me, playing my senior season is more important than a big social gathering. Senior year is something we don’t get back.”

Although Holder is uncertain about the future of her season, she is thankful for everyday she spent on and off the field as a Misericordia student athlete.

She said her favorite memory was when she hit a home run during a game versus Manhattanville College during her sophomore year. She described the experience as a “personal victory.”

“This team was our toughest competition in the division. The game we were playing that day was very important for rankings in post season. My first time at bat, I was over-anxious. I felt confused at the plate and watched two strikes go by. Then struck out on strike 3. With a runner on third early in the game, I was so mad at myself for not scoring her. I carried this into the field with me. However, my next time at bat, I had this realization that I needed to fix my mental game and gave myself a pep talk. I got up and hit a home run to tie the game. Then my teammate hit another one after me and we ended up winning. I was so excited that we beat them and that our team won. It was an awesome feeling,” Holder said.

She said she will miss the time she spent with the team the most.

“I’m going to miss dancing before ground rules, singing to walk up songs, and seeing my team every day,” Holder said. “I’m not going to remember my batting average or how many runners I’ve thrown out, but I am always going to remember the relationships I had with everyone.”