Feb. 7, 2013
By Michael Winnewisser, Athletics Communications Student Assistant
JJ Wagoner of UC Davis softball is excited for this upcoming season. The season begins Feb. 8 at the Fresno State Kick-Off Tournament. JJ sits down with Athletics Communications to talk about her sport of choice, and her little known hobby of dancing. JJ comes into this season after batting .262 and leading the team with three triples last year.
How long have you been playing softball/baseball?
I've been playing softball since I was eight, but I started baseball when I was four or five with T-ball, and then I played the actual rookie baseball with boys when I was six and seven. Once they had a softball league I started playing when I was eight.
What are some of the things about last season that you want to carry over into this one?
Definitely the team chemistry that we usually have. This year with so many freshmen and so many people moving around and changing positions, I think we have a great chance at getting that team chemistry going, and that will be a great help.
Of the many you are capable of playing, what is your favorite position?
Oh, that's a hard one! I would say catcher because you're involved in every play and there's nothing like being able to throw someone out. That's a highlight, getting to throw someone out, or making a stop at the plate, those are always my favorite things.
Have any skills or abilities you learned through your dancing carried over into softball?
It helps me with my balance, to have a certain rhythm when I go up to bat, and also with the different footwork or steps required when it comes to throwing while at catcher or in the outfield.
What is it about softball or baseball that has kept you playing for all these years?
I definitely think that being a part of a team is really motivating, and the connection you get with your other teammates makes you just want to keep playing the game. Also the fact that it taught me how to work hard and how to be a leader, and that it could also give me the opportunity to keep moving up to a different level, from rec ball to travel ball to high school, to playing DI at UC Davis where I also get to have a firm education.
What are some personal and team goals you have for this season?
Team goals, we definitely want to win the Big West conference. We want to push past the Regionals that we made it to my freshman year, and go to Super Regionals, and make it to the World Series. I think we have some talent on the team that can get us there. As for personal goals, I just want to play any position or fill whatever role that will help my team get to the top.