Jan. 7, 2013
Every Monday leading up to the 2012-13 season RamblinWreck.com will feature "The Morning Perk", where head softball coach Sharon Perkins answers a few questions and gives an inside look into the team, practice and the upcoming season.
Fans can submit questions they'd like answered via Twitter to @GaTechMarketing or by email to GTMarketing@athletics.gatech.edu.
The Morning Perk: Last season was another success as the team won the 2012 ACC Championship for the third time in four years. What do you take away from a season like that?
Coach Perkins: I came away from last year extremely impressed with how our players responded to everything that was thrown at them all season. We opened the year with some HUGE wins over Arizona, Oklahoma and battled Alabama to the end. Then Kelsi [Weseman] wasn't full-go for six weeks with an illness and injury, and then Lindsay Anderson was out for the entire year with a career-ending arm injury. We struggled for a few weeks there and dug ourselves a hole in conference play. Hope [Rush] was hurting midway through the year having to pitch so much and Kylie [Kleinschmidt] and Karly [Fullem] were able to come in and get us some innings. We ended up finishing third in the ACC standings and then put it all together to win the ACC Tournament in front of a nationally televised ESPN audience. We placed six players on the ACC All-Academic Team, three on the All-ACC first or second team and had the ACC Player of the Year for the second year in a row. I really thought the entire team stepped up through everything that was thrown at them. I couldn't have been any prouder of a team than I was of last year's team.
TMP: What are your expectations for this season with the return of six starters, but the loss of All-American Kelsi Weseman?
CP: I think because we had to play without her for a good month to six weeks of the season, it may have prepared us somewhat for this year. Although we only have two seniors, Kelly Delashmit and Hope Rush, we have strong leadership in our junior class. Also, our sophomores were thrown into roles last year probably earlier than we all would have expected. I like this freshmen class coming in as well. This team has a lot of fight and heart in it, and it starts with our returners.
TMP: What did you do over the holidays?
CP: The holidays are fun and relaxing for the Perkins family!!! We drove down to Florida and spent three nights in Orlando, then the rest of the time in Sarasota with my parents and my brother, his wife, my niece and nephew and some close friends we have down there. Our daughter Katie was able to put in three days at Michele Smith's Holiday Softball Camp in Clearwater with a friend of hers that plays for the Sarasota Heat '99 team. It's a lot of fun catching back up with my parents, my brother and his family. We rang in the New Year with my family and friends in downtown Sarasota at the infamous Pineapple Drop.
TMP: What's your favorite holiday tradition?
CP: My favorite holiday tradition now is probably going to Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure and/or Magic Kingdom with my husband Cris and children Katie and Nick. This year, my brother's family joined us. Last year it was one of our best friends and his three boys. We go every year and we have a great time. We try and eat each year at Disney Beach Club where my goal is to eat my weight in crab legs!!! I almost succeeded this year!!! :)
TMP: Did you come up with a New Year resolution? If so, what is it and how do you plan to stay motivated?
CP: I didn't really put together a New Year's Resolution. With Lent starting in February, I try and give myself a little time to figure out some sort of resolution!! :)
TMP: Does the team set a resolution or motto for the preseason?
CP: We will leave it up to the team to come up with something. Last year we had a scavenger hunt at our fall outing and one of the names of the group was Too Tough, so that kind of just stuck and we put it on our 2012 ACC Championship ring.