Wildcat of the week: Claire Wayne

Claire Wayne will be moving from third base to behind the plate as catcher this upcoming season. Photo credit: Noah Enns

Claire Wayne will be moving from third base to behind the plate as catcher this upcoming season. Photo credit: Noah Enns

Claire Wayne is a junior catcher and third baseman for Chico State’s softball team. Wayne received honorable mention her sophomore year and is looking to improve upon that while helping the Wildcats along with winning a California Collegiate Athletic Association championship. The ’Cats look for Wayne to be a major contributor to their success this season.

Q: Who or what has been your biggest influence to playing softball?

A: “I have to say my biggest influence on playing softball would be my dad. My dad was awesome growing up. It was really funny and I didn’t appreciate it at the time, but now that I have gotten older, I have really come to know that he has been the one to push me all through growing up. I remember when I was eight, it was a big thing for your dad to coach you, but my dad never wanted to coach me because he was always like, ‘no I want you to figure it out. I’m going to be on the sidelines supporting you but you need to figure it out yourself.’ He would tell me we’re not going to be doing daddy ball and I was always very about that. As I got a little bit older, he would try to tell me things and I would tell him I knew what I was doing. Initially I didn’t really know and just didn’t want to listen to him because he was he was my dad, but now that I’ve got to this point in my life, I love calling my dad after a game more than anything. I really appreciate him pushing me to keep playing this game.”

Q: What changes, if any, have you made to your game for the upcoming season?

A: “Well first of all, I’m kind of switching positions. Over the last two years I have played primarily third base and this year I’m moving behind the plate to catch. I’ve always been a catcher, but I definitely had to brush up my old skills and step up my game behind the plate. I had to make a couple changes on my hitting too. I really worked on being disciplined at the plate this season. All through fall, I worked on a couple pitches here and there that were my weaknesses.”

Q: What are your goals for this upcoming season?

A: “My goals for sure this season individually and as a team are that we want to win. We’re going to go get that regular season title for the CCAA. We really want to win the CCAA championship so that’s all conference. Not only do we want to do that, but we also want to win regionals and try to get to the Natty so that’s definitely something that’s been on our mind this season.I know individually that I have some goals here and there. Last season I was CCAA honorable mention and this season I’m going for first team because I don’t even want to say second team because I really know that if I set myself high and really work hard for it then I think there’s a good chance. I really want us to play together and for us to win and to do well. If we set these goals and follow the road map I think it will all work out.”

Noah Enns can be reached at [email protected] or @Enns_OrionSport on Twitter.