A Softball Player’s Perspective – New CIF Guidelines


Keara Keetly

Selfie with the 2019-2020 season softball team.

PASADENA, CA — I could have never imagined a softball season such as this one. Last week, I sat at my desk on a Wellness Wednesday afternoon, drinking a frozen fruit smoothie. Meetings were typical, I suppose. Yet, this Athletic Leadership Council meeting had unexpectedly taken a turn, both hopefully and optimistically.

Steve Bergen, the Mayfield Athletic Director, announced that five sports would be returning in March. With palpable, tentative anticipation, I waited for the names of my sports to be called, whether softball or basketball. As both a senior and Softball Representative on the council, I was excited for the mere possibility of returning to the team sport environment, especially after the difficulties and obstacles that the remote school year has presented. 

“We are currently in Season #1 which for Mayfield consists of Cross Country, Volleyball, and Water Polo,” Bergen said in a subsequent email to the student body. “Since XC (Cross-Country) is in the purple tier, our team has been practicing daily in hopes of having a Prep League meet at the end of this month,” Bergen’s email explained. Though the Prep League announced that winter seasons end on March 6, the league will focus on the spring season sports.

Although it seemed unlikely that basketball would be returning this year, I was cautiously excited for a potential spring season including the sports in the purple and red tiers – Golf, Softball, Swim/Dive, Tennis, and Track/Field. The email noted that the season — as well as daily practices– would begin March 15.

I am currently optimistic, even if I did not have the full senior year I had wished for.  Because, simply, nearly a year ago from today — the beginning of quarantine — I reminisced about the sensation of metal cleats clicking on a concrete walkway, a dusty field glove, loud dugout cheers, and numbers in bold, red letters. I can still remember a helmet of indescribable scratches, old bubble gum in shiny wrappers, and a bag filled to the brim with dirt. 

Last March, I experienced the distinct feeling of hanging up a uniform, and thinking how instantaneously the game was taken away. Perhaps, a final sports season will be in the cards for the Mayfield Class of 2021.