FINDING THE BALL “In softball, pitchers’ release points are important. When I’m at the plate, I don’t look at the pitcher’s face or glove, I look at her hip. I call it the ‘window.’ That’s the only thing I’m looking at. When I’m zoned in, I see the ball the whole way, from the pitcher’s hand to my bat. I never take my eyes off it.” WORK ETHIC “I take hundreds of swings a week to perfect my swing. I’ve been doing it with my dad since I was 10. It’s hard to work on the things that you’re not very good at. If you only work on your strengths, that’s when your weaknesses develop.” DRILLS “My favorite is a one-handed drill. I use a little bat, and I first swing with one hand, then the other. In another drill, I turn my lower body as if my swing is already finished, then swing. That drill makes me aware of how the core of my body pushes through the whole swing.” THE PITCH YOU CAN’T HIT “There isn’t any one pitch. Some girls don’t like the outside pitch, but I really like hitting that pitch. My record-breaking home run was on a one-and-two count, and the pitcher tried to pitch me outside. I know the Utah Valley coach, and he said, ‘Where are we supposed to throw to you? You’re hitting it everywhere.’” THE PITCHER YOU WANT TO HIT “Mariano Rivera. If I could get a hit off him, I could quit playing. And Danielle Lawrie, who now plays professional fastpitch softball. I faced her in the fifth game of my college career when she pitched for the University of Washington, and I struck out three times. I just want another shot at her.” SAM FISCHER GOES NATIONAL After graduating in May, Sam Fischer earned a spot on the U.S. national softball team and, just as she did as LMU, is providing crucial power and runs to the offense. The team will compete in the 2012 International Softball Federation Women’s Fastpitch World Championship in Whitehorse, Yukon Province, Canada on July 13-22. You can find streaming and stats here. An excellent story about Fischer’s journey from unknown to starter on the national team appeared at ESPNW. Last, read a story about how she knocked in the game-winning runs in another international tournament championship match against Canada here.