By Eric Lopez – @EricLopezELO
Why you should listen : Keilani Ricketts just finished off one of the greatest college softball careers any player has ever had. Ricketts reflected on her career at Oklahoma where she ended up being a two-time USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year, 2013 Big 12 Pitcher of the Year and 2012 Big 12 Player of the Year, 3-time NFCA first-team All-American (2011-2013), Big 12 Female Athlete of the year in 2013. Ricketts cap off her career winning Most Outstanding Player at the 2013 WCWS as she led the Sooners to the National Championship. Ricketts talked about pitching for the USSSA Pride and getting the chance of getting to play with pitching legend Cat Osterman. Ricketts talks about what life is life like in the NPF. Ricketts shared her thoughts on the Sooners run in winning the national championship in 2013 over Tennessee, the motivation that came from losing to Alabama the year before at the WCWS Championship series. Ricketts talked about the success of the Sooners senior class Ricketts was part of who are all playing in the NPF currently. Here is list of the Sooners senior class in the NPF.( Ricketts and Catcher Jessica Shultz with USSSA Pride, Pitcher Michelle Gascoigne- Chicago Bandits, OF- Brianna Turang with Akron Racers).
Ricketts also discussed on why things did not work out with the US National team , her thoughts on the future of USA Softball, Summer Olympics , as well as how much the uncertain future of Softball in the Olympics had an impact on Ricketts not willing to make a long term commitment that USA Softball was forcing on Ricketts. Ricketts was drafted 4th overall by the Pride in the 2013 NPF Draft, Ricketts talked about being part of the rivalry between the Pride and Chicago Bandits as both teams are the favorites to win NPF Championship which will be decided in the NPF Championship series from August 22-24. Ricketts talks about how long she wants to play softball and her aspirations long term and more.
Bonus- Ricketts facts
Keilani Ricketts joined Cat Osterman (2003, 2005 and 2006) and Danielle Lawrie (2009 and 2010) as the only multiple USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Year honorees. All three have pitched for the USSSA Pride.
About USSSA Florida Pride:
The USSSA Florida Pride is a professional franchise in the National Pro Fastpitch League that is owned and operated by USSSA. The amateur organization of USSSA has multi-sport coverage and encompasses teams and players from the United States and abroad.
National Pro Fastpitch is headquartered in Nashville, TN. The league, created to give elite female fastpitch players the opportunity to pursue a professional career in their chosen sport, has operated since 1997 under the names of Women’s Pro Fastpitch (WPF) and Women’s Pro Softball League (WPSL). NPF is the Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball in the category of women’s fastpitch softball since 2002.
The United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA), headquartered in Osceola County, Florida, USSSA is the World’s Largest Multi-sport Athletic Organization. Founded in 1968, USSSA has grown to over 3.7 million participants, competing in 13 nationally sanctioned sports including Baseball, Fastpitch, Slow Pitch, Karate, Basketball, Soccer and more! For more information on USSSA and to register your team visit USSSA.com. Also be sure to visit USSSAToday.com for the latest USSSA News!