Mrs. Waters hits hard as the new softball coach


by Dominick Shrewberry

Mrs. Waters (left) gives her team a pep talk while they stretch before their 2-hour practice. Senior Alanna Nelson-Thiede (right) listens intently.

Athletic Director Amanda Waters is best known for her job as the athletic director at Carlsbad High School. In the 2014-2015 school year, however, she coached the varsity girls basketball team and led them to a CIF win. This year, she is also serving as the head coach of the varsity softball team.

Year to year, things change, but I’m not planning on going anywhere.”

— Mrs. Waters

The former head coach, Coach Russ, resigned last year to spend more time with her family. Despite this, she still supports the team by going to games and being the hitting coach. Coach Waters stepped in as head coach willingly.

“I’m really enjoying it,” Coach Waters said. “It’s a lot of fun. The kids are great, they work really hard. I don’t see it ending anytime soon. It just depends. Year to year, things change, but I’m not planning on going anywhere.”

Coach Waters was a pitcher at Husson College in Maine and enjoys being out on the field with her players. While the team has a coach who strictly focuses on pitching, Coach Waters gives tips from time to time.

“[Husson] was amazing,” Coach Waters said. “I was a pitcher so as far as stats go, the one I didn’t even know I had until I went there was 500 strikeouts in four years. I had really good teammates. I think that’s kind of what makes your college experience. High school, you have some that love the game and some that are just happy to be there and want to hang out. In college, everybody wants to be there. So it brings it to a totally different level. It pushes you to be better.”

A typical practice with Coach Waters begins with about 15 minutes of stretching and foul polls, which incorporates a lot of running. The team then goes into drills and skills. They practice hitting, infielding and outfielding. After the fundamentals, Coach Waters takes into account who the team is playing next and that is what guides the rest of the 2-hour practice.

“Coach Waters stepped in because she played softball in college and it was a really big part of her life so now she wants to help us out and it’s actually been a really great experience having her as our coach,” Nelson-Thiede said. “I spend most of my time with the pitching coach but also [Coach] Waters will step in and ask some questions or she’ll add her input because she was a pitcher in college and she knows what she’s talking about.”

Because Coach Waters sticks to a tight schedule, the two hours pass quickly. The team works hard everyday after school from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. They get the weekend off, except for possible Saturday games.

“It was really cool to win all of our games that day,” Nelson-Thiede said. “We didn’t know that we were going to play three games but we all just really had each other’s backs and pulled through. We beat the team that was ranked number one, Granite Hills, but we also beat the team ranked number two. I just think that by the end of the season we will be up there with the open division teams.”

While it may seem like Coach Waters has a lot on her plate being both athletic director and varsity softball coach, she keeps a balance between the two.  She doesn’t see it as a struggle, but as a fun challenge.

“I really keep it separate,” Coach Waters said. “The girls on the team know that I’m their coach when I’m there. Yes, this is my job, but when I’m softball, I’m their coach. And I’m excited to be around the kids like that again. In my position, I deal with either the ones that are struggling or the ones that get the awards. I don’t get to see all the other’s a lot of the time, so it’s nice to get back into it.”

The team currently has a record of 14-8-1, tying the number three rank in the division, Poway High School. On Mar. 9, CHS beat the number one rank, Granite Hills 6 to 1. The team is currently in ranked ninth. Starting the season unranked and climbing to this spot, Coach Waters and the team have high hopes for a spot in the Open Division.

“We came out really strong this year and we weren’t ranked in pre-season, which gave us the motivation to make a strong name for ourselves and let our competition know to take us seriously,” Foley said.

Confident in her coaching abilities and the talent and hard work of her team, Coach Waters sees a positive outcome for this season. The top eight teams move to Open Division. Though they are unsure which division they will end up in, the team has secured their spot in CIF.

“We’ll tough to beat, and I’m okay with starting the year where no one’s expecting us to be good,” Coach Waters said. “I’m okay with that.”