Former softball star Jordan Strum ’18 passed the varsity team down to her sister Jersey, and the younger Strum is excited to keep the flame sparked by her sister alive.
Jordan and Jersey served as a pitching force on the softball field before Jordan graduated last year and left the team in the hands of her sister. Jordan now pitches at the University of New England, in Biddeford, Maine.
Jersey, a junior, isn’t technically a captain this year since the team doesn’t have any, but she does play the role of a leader on the team and a role model to the other players, especially to those who are new to the game. Jersey grew up playing the game in Raytown, Missouri, and has been playing for almost 13 years now.
Jersey said she felt comfortable playing on a team with her sister; she grew up doing it.
“Jordan’s coaches always let me practice with their team growing up so it wasn’t anything new,” Jersey said. “It was nice to be on the same team because she was always pushing me and expecting better from me, which made me work harder.”
Jordan, who pitched and played on the first softball championship team at Williston, in 2016, agreed that playing with her sister was comfortable and fun.
“Williston softball was some of the best times of my life, and to be able to share it with my little sister made it so much more special,” she said.
The team faced a major change with the loss of eight seniors, but that only left Jordan and Jersey hopeful for a strong younger team.
“I know for a fact they’re going to do amazing,” said Jordan. “They have a strong group of young, talented girls that will help this program continue to grow and hopefully win us some more championships.”
Though she doesn’t worry about the pressure to fill her sister’s shoes, Jersey does want to make sure she continues to build on everything her team has worked for the past few years. But, without her sister’s encouraging voice out on the field, Jersey feels she needs to step up to fill that role.
“I feel like it is my job to be that loud confident leader,” she said.
Jordan believes Jersey will adjust as necessary to help the team.
“I have no doubt that she will step up and be one of the best players in the league,” she said.
Jersey also feels her role as a leader is important because making the other players feel comfortable with her is crucial for a strong team dynamic.
“It’s hard to build a trust with my team if they can’t depend on me as a player and a person,” she said.
Jordan is certain the team will achieve great things this season and beyond.
“I’m so unbelievably excited to see the program continue to grow,” she said, “and I know Jersey will be a huge part of it and I’m so excited to watch her.”
This story originally ran in The Willistonian.