Wuller catches attention on diamond

Sean Dunleavy, Sports Editor

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For the past four years, senior Nicole Wuller has been the starting catcher for the high school’s varsity softball team.  She first picked up the sport five years prior to her freshman year and hasn’t looked back since.

“I have always loved playing softball. It is the place where I cope and ‘leave it all out on the field.’  What I mean by this is that everything that is going on in my life either with school, relationships, or any type of drama, I ignore it and focus on one thing: playing to the best of my ability.  Game time is the place where I can show off my skills and my strength,” Wuller said.

Wuller also enjoys the “short term” aspect of softball in which every play is separate from the last because it allows new opportunities to make up for mistakes.  She emphasizes the importance of keeping a positive attitude while playing in order to capitalize on each play. Varsity softball coach Betsy Harvey notes Wuller’s ability to remain positive as a part of what she brings to the team.

“Nicole brings the game experience and game knowledge to our team that helps all of our younger players learn and get better. She has been voted captain by her teammates for the past two years, and I know a lot of that has to do with the fact that they respect her a great deal and trust her to help them get the job done not only in games but in practice. She is a very positive and encouraging leader, as well as always leading by example and giving 100 percent of herself everyday,” Harvey said.

Wuller points to playing the catcher position as having an impact on her development as she sees herself as the “captain of the field” and learned to speak up in order to get the other players to know what’s going on.

“As a teammate, I would describe her as determined and confident. She’s always one to try and pick the team up when we need it or to help us keep good motivation going. Her positive attitude also helps the rest of the team stay positive and focused. As my catcher, I know I can always depend on her to keep me focused,” senior Taylor Westerberg said.

Through her leadership abilities, Wuller has managed to set herself apart on the field by getting her teammates ready to play and by leading by example.

“Nicole’s knowledge and experience of the game allow her to provide a sense of leadership to the team. She continuously displays this leadership whether it be in pre-game pep talks or instinctive

decisions on the field,” senior Lauren Rossitto said.

Next year, Wuller will further her softball career at Western Connecticut State University. She cites the close proximity of the school to home and the school’s many internships in the health science field as reasons for her decision to play there.  She wanted to play close to home so that her family would be able to watch her play in college, including her dad whom she says was the biggest influence to her when it comes to softball.

“He is the one who always pushes me to try harder and gives me constructive criticism either in the dugout or on the side lines. He has been my coach for many years, ever since the little league and until now as one of my assistant travel coaches. My dad was the one who introduced me to softball. He has taught me all of the positions to the best of his ability to what I believe is as an advantage when playing because you always know what is going on and if someone were to get hurt, you would be able to fulfill their spot,” Wuller said.

Her ability to play every position should aid her in her career in college as she will be used as a utility player, which is someone who can play multiple positions.

The softball team finished the season with a final record of 8-12.