At 4'11", Kelley Montalvo packs a lot of talent in a small body. The University of Alabama product joined the Akron Racers in 2010 after a stellar career at Alabama. She has been a defensive standout, while being a solid contributor on offense.
Kelley was named the 2014 NPF Jennie Finch Award Winner for her positive impact on the sport, both on and off the field. I witnessed some of that spirit firsthand last season. Even on "enemy" turf at the Ballpark in Rosemont, Kelley had a group of fans waiting for her after the game. Despite a loss, Kelley signed autographs, posed for pictures and talked to her young fans.
Kelley is a great role model. You don't play as long as she has in the NPF without talent and determination. Obviously her size was somewhat of a hurdle, but she has proven that smaller women can still make it in the NPF. That is another great thing about that league, too.
I am a big fan of Kelley (despite her playing for the rival Racers) and a huge fan of the NPF. You can learn more about Kelley, the Racers and the NPF at AkronRacers.org. You can also follow Kelley on twitter.
Kelley Montalvo and me in Rosemont, IL-August 2015.