Associated: “Cussed” Bernstein Stops Pitching and Wins Corridor of Fame in East Illinois | Sports activities

Michele Smith has arrived in town. If you were a little familiar with softball, you knew it was important. If you were eight and wanted to play the game, there was a chance in your young life to be coached by the pitcher who won the Olympic gold medal.

“I didn’t know about pitching, but I asked my dad to go,” said Amber May.

Mike May agreed, they drove quickly from their normal home to the weekend clinic at Shark Center in Illinois. His daughter fired at one of six rows of ambitious pitchers, and Smith went on a round for tips and techniques.

Young amber sprayed the ball on all the fields. It would be nice if you were a dough …

“I couldn’t put the ball on the plate. I remember the Wesleyan trainer telling my father, ‘I think she needs to find another position.’ “My father said,” Well. , She’s too stubborn. She won’t do it. “I kept working for a while. “

May, until she became the record ace of the 2007 Class AA State Champion of Normal Community High School, the flagship of the 3rd didn’t stop. ..

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She is currently inducted into the Hall of Fame. As you may have learned recently, she will be inducted into the Illinois Eastern Athletics Hall of Fame on October 15th.

“I told sporting director Tom Michael that it was humble to be inducted into the EIU greats who were inducted into the Hall of Fame,” May said. “I didn’t really know what to say. I was a little emotional. It’s a great honor.”

The ERA in May was 1.98 in the EIU from 2009 to 2011, 4th place (57), innings served (685), full game (73), shutout (17) and 4th in school history. Strikethrough (582).

She did everything after undergoing major knee surgery, including a tournament that recorded 51 strikeouts in three games through May after NCHS competed in the 2007 state championships.

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Her first appearance in Heartland the next fall was an inning in eastern Illinois. It caught the attention of EIU Director Kim Schütt.

“She came over to Doug Out and offered me a (scholarship) and I accepted the day,” May said. “It just worked out perfectly and it worked really well. Many schools did some kind of retreat after I had this knee surgery. She believed in me and I was able to take the lead. To be able to do that meant a lot. “

May’s success in the east went beyond softball. She earned an average of 3.4 bachelor’s and master’s degrees. She has found a home in Charleston and EIU, and is assistant director of Alumni Services.

Her best season in Eastern was the 2011 Ohio Valley Conference Pitcher of the Year as a senior. May was 23-6, the Panthers a total of 40-12, hitting a 26-4 mark in the Ohio Valley.

“We had a bit of a problem with my third grade,” she said. “It was great to be able to get back to the top of my 4th grade to win the big game and have the first Eastern OVC. Our team clicked this year. It’s a group of fun girls and it was a great coaching staff. “

In May I still use a windmill on my right arm that was once wild. She frequently practices hitting on her coaching staff, Charleston High School, and has a competitive spot in the Effingham Women’s Fast Pitch League.

On August 1, she moved her rubber toes with her toes at Busch Stadium, home of the St. Louis Cardinals. There’s an annual closing event with the Cardinals in eastern Illinois, and in May I was asked to throw the first throw of a game at 1:15 pm against the Minnesota Twins.

“Underhand or overhand?” She was asked.

“I haven’t made up my mind yet,” May said. “I’ll have to practice.”

No problem. In May we have a history of working until we get it right.

I’ve heard of the perfect baseball and softball game. A pitcher who finishes a game without allowing a base runner is considered perfect.

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Randy Kindred is a retired columnist and sports editor for The Pantagraph. Follow Randy Kindred on Twitter: pg_kindred

Related: “Stubborn” Bernstein continues pitching and wins place in Hall of Fame in Eastern Illinois | Sports

Source link Kindred: “Stubborn” Bernstein continues pitching and wins a place in the Hall of Fame in eastern Illinois | Sports

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