There are several new members of the Florida State softball family for the 2015-16 season. Over the course of the remaining weeks leading up to Opening Day, we will be doing a “Getting To Know” series to introduce the new freshmen and transfer students to Seminole fans. Today, we will be talking with Abby Evans, a freshman pitcher from Marietta, Ga.
Evans is a right-handed pitcher from the Atlanta Vipers organization. The Vipers earned 16U ASA State and National Championships in 2013. She earned Region Pitcher of the Year and All-State honorable mention honors as a freshman in 2011 for Hillgrove High School. In both 2012 and 2013, Evans was named first team All-County and All-Region.
Closing out her high school career, Evans and Hillgrove finished second in the 2014 GHSA State tournament as she pitched 37 of the 40 innings the Hawks played in the tournament, earning a spot on the All-County First Team. For her career at Hillgrove, Evans has amassed a record of 47-22 with an ERA of 1.50 and 450 strikeouts in 459 innings pitched.
What has your freshman year been like so far?
It has been everything that I expected, as far as the unfamiliarity and everything. I was more comfortable than I expected, too. I was out of my comfort zone at first, but adjusted quickly and was anxious to get softball started. School was easy, but learning to manage my time has been the biggest thing. I think it’s been great so far and I’m looking forward to the season.
What has been one of the most difficult challenges of transitioning to college?
Physically and athletically, it has been a challenge, but I expected that. I knew that coming to a big school like Florida State that it was going to be challenging. And that is what I wanted. Academically, it has been challenging to stay motivated in some classes that I’m not as interested in. But overall it has been good.
If you could be any animal, what would you be?
A pig, because I love pigs. I am literally obsessed with them. I have three pairs of pig slippers. There isn’t really a reason behind it, and people ask all the time, but I’ve loved them since I was in the third grade. They are cute.
What made you choose to come to Florida State?
The challenge. This is the only big school that offered me a scholarship. I had the opportunity to go schools where I would be the No. 1 pitcher, but, to me, that seemed like taking the easy way out. I wanted a challenge, I wanted to see what I am capable of at a bigger level. That, and the coaches. You can’t find a better staff and the girls are great, too. Everyone seems like they love it here.
What’s the best vacation you’ve ever taken?
Definitely a Disney cruise when I was in first grade. It was the last family trip that I can remember taking with my mom. It was just the four of us, me, my dad, my mom and my brother. Unlimited ice cream and food, it was great. And it was Disney; I love Disney.
If you could learn any skill, what would it be?
Probably to hit. I wish I would have stuck with it, but I stopped hitting freshman year of high school and then tried starting up again this past year, but I knew I wasn’t going to hit here. I just praise good hitters. Even though I praise them, I obviously still want to get them out. But to be able to be a really successful hitter, that’d be really cool.
Describe an event that has helped shape who you are today?
Witnessing my mom’s battle with cancer. She was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was three and passed away when I was in third grade. Not only did she fight through it, but also the person she shaped me to be – to never give up and, no matter what, keep smiling and make others feel better. I never saw her cry or be upset throughout her whole battle, and that, to me, is very inspiring and that what I go through is nothing compared to what she went through and what others are experiencing. It teaches you to be grateful for your life and the people around you.
What is one thing you really like about yourself?
How I feel about others. I care deeply about everyone. I am really looking forward to be a mom in the future, and sometimes I’m a mom to so many people in different ways. People tell me, “You are 19, you have plenty of time.” But I don’t like to see anyone get hurt, no matter what our differences are.
What is something you cannot live without?
This pillow I have. It is ancient. My step mom made me wash it the other day for the first time in who knows how long. If you feel it, it just feels like cotton balls, but I cannot sleep without it. It is the most distressed pillow ever, but I don’t know what it is, I just have this attachment to it. I have to sleep with it or I won’t get to sleep at all. It is perfectly formed to my head.
What would be a perfect afternoon for you?
Having lunch at Chipotle, dessert at Dairy Queen and finding a litter of baby pigs on the side of the road. I have actually never seen a pig in my life, so to see a pig would be awesome. Any afternoon filled with pigs would be fabulous.