Rounding the bases
Senior outfielder Reina Gaber and senior infielder Holly Anderson had no idea that they were in the top eight in Conference USA in batting average, but neither one let it affect her goals and focus.
“As an individual, batting average and statistics are important in terms of career,” Gaber said. “Personal statistics are nice; I would rather have a zero batting average, never play and go to the World Series.”
Gaber learned how to view softball from her father. Instead of looking at winning or losing, she thinks about the game analytically.
Gaber and her father discuss what she did well and ways to improve after each game. Anderson uses the goals she sets for herself to push herself toward continued improvement.
“Hollywood,” a nickname Anderson has had since childhood, never feels satisfied with her accomplishments. They push her toward higher goals.
“You are known to fail more than you succeed in softball,” Anderson said. “I try to succeed half the time, and I guess right now, I’m just falling a little bit short of that.”
Gaber and Anderson fit in with the team so well because their mindset fits in with the ideas and goals of head coach Kyla Holas.
Details, consistency and humility are key components in Holas’ defensive philosophy. With the team still early in the season, the Cougars are working to find the things that help them succeed on an individual and team level.
“Trust and confidence are what they struggle with the most — trusting each other and then having confidence in themselves that they know how to play the game,” Holas said.
Holas holds the team to a high standard on defense. She called defense the team’s biggest struggle, and she expects her experienced players to help the rest of the team reach that standard.
“We’ve built this program on details,” said Holas, who has coached the Cougars for 13 seasons. “The little things are what separate us from everyone else. Then when you can take care of those little things, a lot of these errors we are making take care of themselves.”