New Pine Cellular 250

By Chris Chandler

Kayleigh Brown lives in the moment. She describes her favorite sport as: “Whatever season it is. Right now, softball. I’m hoping to have a good run at the state tournament, but as soon as softball is over I will be ready for basketball.”

The anticipation of competition is as exciting to the Battiest junior as the game itself. “I think the best thing about softball is the feeling I get before playing my team’s rivals. It’s like me and the other eight girls on my team are all thinking the same exact thing and the feeling you get when you beat a team like that is indescribable.”

Winning the Clayton tournament during last year’s slow-pitch season was a highlight of her career thus far. “We lost early on . . . but came back to win the next 6 games to win the tournament. Our last game wasn’t over until 12:30 at night.”

Brown is part of a sports tradition in her family. When she isn’t on the field herself, she cheers her younger sisters’ junior high softball team on, She also enjoys rodeos, livestock shows and is a member of the YAB (Youth Advisory Board).

Kayleigh’s community spirit was evident during the closure last spring. She volunteered to clean the yards of elderly people in her community. She and her sisters also kept their competitive edge by playing cornhole, wiffle ball, and games in the family pool. She admonishes her sisters and other young athletes to totally commit to their sport. “If you’re going to play, whether it’s softball or basketball, know as soon as you start that you’ll give 110% in whatever you do. Listen to your coaches and always be a team player. My biggest challenge has been that not everyone is going to give 110% every time they play. I want my whole team to want to win as bad as I do every time we play someone.”

Brown says her team goal aligns with this advice. “At the end of this year (we want) to know when we walk off the field for the last time . . . that we left everything we had out there.” Though still an underclassman, Kayleigh already has plans for college and is taking AP courses. She currently has a 4.0 GPA. She intends to major in Physical Therapy and minor in being a lab tech (Phlebotomy). Her future plans don’t take away from her focus on the here and now. “I want (teachers) to say I am hardworking, respectful, responsible, honest and, most importantly, just a good person all-around. I’m so thankful for my hometown people. I never have a game without someone giving me a hug, a high-five, or just a simple ‘Good Game, Girl’, knowing every one of those fans loves me just like one of their own.”

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