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Faces Off the Field: Amber Wiggins, sophomore pitcher, Liberty Hill

What do you remember about the first time you played in a competitive softball game?

In my first game, I hit seven girls in a row. I was 9 or 10, and it was so embarrassing. The parents of the other team were yelling at me. Their coach asked (the umpire) if he was going to let me hit every girl.

Why did you become a pitcher?

One of my friends (Brooke McKinney) had an older sister who pitched, and I thought it was so cool. I kind of idolized her for it. I had to convince my parents to let me pitch. I went out and threw 150 pitches a day, even when it was too dark to see.

What’s your favorite softball memory?

Against Brownwood (on Feb. 28), we scored a run in the seventh inning to win 1-0. It was my first perfect high school game. I remember telling everybody to just give me one run and I’ll do it for you.

If you could have dinner with any four people in the history of the world, whom would you invite?

(Softball pitcher) Lisa Fernandez, Ed Sheeran, Abraham Lincoln and Obama.

Why Lincoln?

Lincoln started the shift between Republican and Democratic platforms. After his presidency, it was so controversial. He wanted to free the slaves. No matter how many people were against him, he still got what he wanted done.

If you had the choice of being valedictorian of your class or all-state in softball, which would you choose?

One of my aspirations is to attend an Ivy League college. All-state would be pretty great, but being valedictorian would get me a step closer to my goal.

Tell me something about yourself that most people don’t know.

My dad is half Japanese. My grandmother (Yoshiko Fukuyama) is full Japanese from Okinawa. So I have a close tie to the Japanese culture. I get a lot of my religious influence (Buddhism) from my grandma.

Do you have a teammate who has helped you grow as a pitcher?

Yes, my catcher Logan (Oehler). She’s there to have my back 100 percent of the time. We’re on the same wavelength. I’ll want to throw a certain pitch and she’ll call it. If I throw a bad pitch, I know she’s there to pick me up.

What’s the hardest thing for you to do in softball?

The pitching circle can be the loneliest place on the field. When you’re in a tough position, it can get in your head. That’s one of the hardest things for a pitcher to handle. It’s such a mental sport.

Tell me about someone who was critical to your development as a pitcher.

My grandfather (Tommy Roberts) would be my catcher every day when I was learning how to pitch.

What’s your favorite movie?

“For Love of the Game” with Kevin Costner. He would always say, ‘Clear the mechanism.’ When it’s loud, it’s hard to focus on what you’re doing. You shut it all out and just focus on you and the catcher’s glove. When I was younger that taught me to relax when everything feels out of control.

What do you consider to be the world’s greatest invention?

Anything that deals with medicine. Medicine has changed so much.

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