Megan Schumacher is an elite power pitcher who plays for the Birmingham Thunderbolts 18U Premier team and is currently in the middle of a busy summer, competing last week at the Boulder IDT, this week at Atlanta Legacy and finishing up at the end of the month with the PGF Nationals in Huntington Beach, California.
The Class of 2019 pitcher from New York will be a freshman this fall at Missouri after being named yesterday as an Extra Inning Softball 1st Team All-American.
Megan was a also a member of the 2019 Extra Elite 100 and blogged about her start in softball at age 6 as well as her why she signed with Mizzou in the article Pre-Signing Preview: New York Pitcher Megan Schumacher On Her SEC School Choice… “It Felt Like Home.”
In today’s Inside Pitch Megan looks back on her playing in Colorado last week and the memories she’ll take with her of her experiences on and off the field…
Colorado: it’s where every softball player wants to be over the 4th of July.
My Birmingham Thunderbolts team played in the Boulder IDT where competition is intense, the fields and views are pristine and you’re literally among hundreds of the best softball players in the country.
It was such an amazing experience and sometimes as my team and I were warming up and preparing to play versus the best of the best, I would catch my breath as I took a step back and soaked it all in taking mental snapshots as I didn’t want these times to end.
Playing in places like Colorado is beyond special and some of my non-softball playing friends think I’m crazy because I miss a lot of things back home but there is no where I’d rather be than on these fields with my team.
Speaking of crazy… I had a crazy couple weeks before getting to Colorado.
I had my last high school classes and final exams, flew to Alabama to practice with my Birmingham Thunderbolts team for the week, then we traveled to Georgia together to play in the Georgia Impact Friendly.
I flew home quick for my high school graduation on June 26 and then arrived back in Georgia three days later to play against the USA Softball U-19 National Team.
It sounds crazy, but every competitive softball player out there knows it’s a good kind of crazy!
We arrived in Colorado Monday, played two practice games Tuesday versus the Texas Impact and Arizona Athletics and got ready for our week ahead.
Unfortunately, sometimes softball can be cruel and during the tournament, we came up short and didn’t finish the way we expected.
We won our first two games over the Beverly Bandits and Tennessee Fury, but the next day we lost 2-1 against the So Cal Athletics and our second game was canceled due to weather.
Due to the field conditions, all the games on Friday were pushed back and were only one hour 10 minutes.
We had to score early and hold our opponents. We had a great 4-3 team win over the OC Batbusters and then a 2-2 tie vs the Gold Coast Hurricanes.
We were the #1 seed in our bracket, but more storms Friday night pushed the games back on Saturday so we didn’t play until 6pm—again one hour 10 minute games. We won our first game over the Texas Bombers 3-0 and then lost our 9 pm game 5-3 to the So Cal A’s.
It was crushing.
We were done when we fully expected to be playing again at 10:30 pm that night and then Sunday at 8:30 am but we were done and it was heartbreaking.
Our team was quiet on the ride back to the hotel and went to sleep not knowing what Sunday held for us. We were out of the tournament, but Head Coach Rocky Thompson expects to be playing on Sundays.
Last year, after losing out on Saturday in Georgia he told us that his teams play on Sunday and that Sunday we had had the most intense, never-say-die practice on Sunday when we should have been playing.
So I set my alarm for 7 am expecting a text saying we would be practicing pretty much all day.
Surprisingly, Coach text asking if we wanted to go to El Dorado Canyon State Park!
None of us had been there and thought we were just going to have a stroll and sight-see a bit. We jumped on a trail which seemed innocent enough and next thing we were hiking through the mountains.
About a mile in, some of my team and Coach Rocky turned back but Coach (Katelyn) Boyd and a bunch of us wanted to finish the hike.
As tough as it was, there was something special about pushing on together. Somehow, we hiked four miles into the mountains.
We didn’t bring water so when we came across a rushing creek we used the one water bottle Coach Boyd had and refilled it with creek water for each of us to drink.
We were dying of thirst and our legs were jelly, but we made it. We headed back laughing and crying at the same time. Five hours and nine miles later we were back where we started with Coach Rocky patiently waiting for us.
From there I went to Missouri for my orientation and now I get to finish my travel ball days at Atlanta Legacy and PGF Nationals… but I’ll never forget my days in Colorado.
Megan Schumacher #27