Meet the Freshmen: Lindsey Stephens
Nov. 20, 2012
Alex Hubbard, Texas Media Relations
AUSTIN, Texas -- Lindsey Stephens was a four-year starter at Hamshire-Fannett High School in Hamshire, Texas. She was named to the 3A Texas Girls Coaches Association (TGCA) All-State Team as a junior and senior.
Stephens was the District 21-3A Offensive MVP as a senior, and played in both the 2012 Adidas Futures All-Star Game and the TGCA All-Star Game.
As a member of the Beaumont Enterprise 2011 and 2012 Super Gold Softball Team, Stephens was named the Super Gold Offensive Player of the Year in 2012, and the Super Gold Player of the Year for Class 3A and under in 2011. After her junior season, in 2011, she was tabbed as the District 21-3A Co-MVP with a .595 batting average.
Stephens arrives on the Forty Acres as Hamshire-Fannett's first Division I softball signee. Recently, she spent some time with TexasSports.com as she prepares for her first season as a Longhorn.
What brought you to Texas? It came down to two schools. My parents said, "You have to go see it. It's Texas. It's near home." And when I got here, what actually made me decide to come were the girls on the team.
Most schools have the same things to offer once you get so far [into the recruiting process], and then it comes down to the people, coaches, and girls. Everybody here was super open and welcoming - like a family. It was just enlightening and I loved it.
What has been the best part of Texas Softball so far? I have to say the girls. It is so much like a family.
What are you looking forward to most in the spring? Playing. Just the games and finally playing at a Division I college. It's my dream.
The fact that I am at Texas, which is a great softball school, is the dream come true. Being in the environment of the sport that I grew up playing, and getting to reach my goals.
Favorite place on UT's campus? I like to go see different things, so I guess I don't have a favorite place. I like to spend time at the nail salon. We like to get our nails and toes done a lot. It is super-relaxing because you go sit down after a workout or practice. We go do that a lot. I don't know if that's my favorite, but it's close.
How do you like Austin? I love Austin. I came here one time when I was little. The next time I came was for my unofficial visit. And now that I am here, it's so different compared to the rest of Texas. It's hilly, not as hot and just pretty. It can almost compare to California. It's really, really nice.
You were the first softball player for Hamshire-Fannett to sign at a Division One school. What does that mean to you? I didn't know that until I saw it on the website. And I was like, "Oh, I was?!" That's kind of cool. I went back home to a high school game and a bunch of little girls were like, "Oh my gosh, you're Lindsey Stephens! You go to UT!"
It makes me feel good, like I achieved something. I guess it's a legacy I left. At Hamshire-Fannett, they didn't expect this to happen. So the fact that I did this I hope opened the eyes of other little girls to thinking they can go D-I. They can play sports they want to play at a very high level.
What is it like to be from Texas and get a chance to play here? It's awesome. Because I am from Texas, I am a part of Texas. Not that other people don't have a connection, but I feel like it's almost natural for me to come to Texas. I'm from Texas, I grew up in Texas, why not make Texas big? Support it and help it grow. I think it is really awesome that I get to play for Texas.
Have you been a Texas Softball fan for a long time? Yes, ever since I was little. My first college I ever supported and wanted to go to was Texas. I was like, "Mom, I am going to Texas. I am going to play softball." And now I find myself right back at Texas.
Were you a Cat Osterman fan? I was in about seventh grade when she was on the Olympic team and I got her autograph. I think her success had a lot to do with a lot of softball players following UT.
It's funny because she was at practice the other day and I said, "Hey Cat, you know I have a picture of us. I wish you would have told me you were coming. I would have brought it."
What adjustments have you made, both at the plate and in the field, to get more acclimated with the college game? I have had to get adjusted to the pitching. There are more pitches and more movement than in high school. Now, I have to focus more and think about what pitch is coming, what pitch did I just swing at and what is the umpire calling. I have to be more in-depth with what is going on.
Defensively, it has been about slowing myself down. I try to go really fast and get the ball and throw it. Since I have a strong arm, I don't really need to rush as much. But I feel like since the game is faster, that I need to speed up. Really, I don't. I need to slow down, set my feet and make a good throw.
How has Coach McFalls helped with your defense? She has helped a lot. Stuff that I wasn't taught, things I was doing incorrectly or out of laziness, those things are corrected now. She has definitely helped me out a lot.
What other sports did you play in high school? I played volleyball, track and tennis. And, I was a cheerleader. I still like to believe that I am a cheerleader.
My mom always told me to try all these sports, because you're never sure what's going to work out. You always should have options. By your junior or senior year, you should know what sport you are going to excel in. At one point, I thought I was going to college for volleyball, until I realized that I had to be like 5-11. I feel like versatility helps. If I can jump or if I can quickly move laterally, different skills from different sports help each other.
Any pregame rituals? In the locker room before games, what helps is how we turn the music up really loud and we just sing and act crazy. We get it all out in the locker room so when we walk on the field it's the mindset of alright, let's go. Let's kick some butt.
And I don't step on the chalk lines. That's a no-no. You don't do that in softball. That's bad luck.
Favorite Thanksgiving food? Honey-B Ham. I made a special request this year. I told my dad, "Dad I am away from home, and so I get to make a special request this year." And apple pie with vanilla ice cream.