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D'Arcy Motors Athlete of the Week: Grace Stevenson, Plano freshman, softball

Grace Stevenson
Grace Stevenson

Why she was selected:

Grace Stevenson, a freshman shortstop, continued to swing a sizzling bat for Plano this past week. She went 3-for-3 with a double against Coal City, 2-for-3 with a double in the next game against Coal City and 4-for-4 against Hall.

On the season, Stevenson is hitting .469 with 45 hits, six doubles, three triples, two home runs and 17 runs batted in for the Reapers. Record sports editor Joshua Welge talked to Stevenson about her hot hitting and all things softball. Here is an edited transcript.

Welge: You seem to be knocking the cover off the ball lately. What's the secret?

Stevenson: I go up to the plate looking to hit.

Welge: You were hitting leadoff before, but now you're hitting third. Do you have a preference? Do you go up to the plate with a different mindset?

Stevenson: I prefer the No. 3 spot.  There is too much pressure to get on base batting leadoff. My job now is to bring my teammates in.

Welge: Has this season met your expectations?

Stevenson: I wasn't sure what to expect, honestly. Being a freshman on a varsity team was intimidating at first, but all the girls have made me feel welcome.

Welge: How much softball is talked about at home? [Stevenson's stepsister Kaylee Read is a sophomore on the softball team.]

Stevenson: Kaylee and I play together for the St. Charles Silverhawks college exposure team also, so softball gets brought up a lot.

Welge: How many bats do you own? Do you have a favorite bat? How long does a bat last?

Stevenson: I have three bats.  My favorite is the Louisville Slugger LXT. Some last longer than others. I usually get a new bat every year. I seem to hit best with Louisville Sluggers.

Welge: Do you have any superstitions or routines on game days?

Stevenson: Yes! I have to wear the same headband. If I play bad in one, I switch to a different color.

Welge: Do you have a game day meal or snack?

Stevenson: I usually have a Cutie in the middle of every game.

Welge: What's been the highlight of your season?

Stevenson: When I hit the grand slam against Lisle or when I hit the walkoff double against Earlville.

Welge: You had an inside-the-park homer in a game, right? What happened there?  

Stevenson: Yes, I did. I hit a bomb off the left field fence. There weren't any errors on the play, I just kept running and beat out the throw to home.

Welge: What's your favorite TV show?

Stevenson: "The Fosters."

Welge: Favorite class?

Stevenson: Math.

Welge: What's the last movie you saw?

Stevenson: "Truth or Dare."

Welge: What's the last book you read?

Stevenson: "Paper Towns."

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