Yesterday was National Girls and Women in Sports Day (NGWSD). I celebrated the day by interviewing pro softball player Ciara Bryan. That interview is at On the Beat With Ciara Bryan.
Ciara started playing as a toddler and quickly became a budding star. At Newton High School in Covington, Georgia, Ciara was named 2015 Region Player of the Year. She went on to star at the University of Georgia, where she earned more awards and accolades.
Ciara's professional career started with Athletes Unlimited Softball. From there she moved on to the new Women's Professional Fastpitch league.
On June 14, 2022, Ciara played in the first ever WPF game, leading her Smash It Sports Vipers over USSSA Pride 9-5. Ciara was 2-3 with 2 Hrs, 6 RBIs and 2 runs scored. Ciara stayed hot all season, having a (AVG/OBP/SLG/OPS) slashline of .316/.350/.526/.876, with 3 HRs, 9 RBIs and 13 runs scored. Her stats were near the top on her team in most categories, including her perfect fielding percentage.
I started the interview by wishing her a happy NGWSD, asking what it meant to her to be celebrated today. She also discussed being a part of the progression of women's sports and a role model for younger and future players.
Ciara talked about AU's unique scoring system and the effect it has on the game. She shared interesting insight into that topic.
When the WPF announced an expansion team in Texas (owned by former Major League Baseball player Brandon Phillips), it fit perfectly into her relocation plans. As she posted on social media, she manifested her her team change to happen. This season, Ciara will play for the Texas team (team name to be announced soon).
Last season, I trekked from Chicago to downstate Peoria to watch a WPF series. When I mentioned that to Ciara, she stated schedules would be coming out late February, but there should be games all over again, as the league tries to gain fans and exposure. That certainly made my day. If the WPF plays anywhere near me, I will be there. Hopefully, I'll get to see Ciara in action.
Ciara finished with revealing what she does to get away from everything. Her dogs play a big part in her life, as witness by the cameo appearances during the interview.
The WPF season starts in June and runs through August. I will update all when the schedule is released and I will cover the season here on The Every Day Fan.