PNW Pioneer

Transfer pitcher makes an impact

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Mia Stevens, pitcher for the softball team, credits teamwork and mental strength for helping her move from the National Junior College Athletic Association to the NCAA Division II team at PNW.

“Any athlete can train and get stronger, but to be able to consistently perform at this level you have to be mentally strong and really know the game,” Stevens said. “The dedication and love of the game you see from teammates is contagious. Being surrounded by people who give everything to this game makes really you want to go out there and leave it all on the field.”

Stevens has been playing softball for more than 12 years, starting when she was 8. She transferred to PNW this year after two years at South Suburban College in South Holland, Illinois, where she also played softball.

Stevens threw a one-hit shutout in the game against University of Minnesota-Crookston over five innings as part of the PFX Spring Games at Legends Way Field in Clermont, Florida, on March 12.

Stevens was undefeated during her first three starts of the season.

Stevens said her appreciation for the game stems from her team feeling like a second family.

“No one can win a game by themselves, it takes a team to come together to achieve a goal,” Stevens said. “We really are a family, and we know that family comes first. At the end of the day we all have each other’s backs and that is a great feeling.”

As a junior communication major, Stevens spends her free time in the television studio.

“When I’m not at practice or a game I’m probably behind a camera or editing a video. Being a broadcasting major at PNW gives me a lot of opportunities to use those skills,” Stevens said.

Niki Stansell, head coach, said Stevens has shown progress in adjusting to a higher division.

“In the beginning I believe she was a little hesitant of what to expect. Through time, getting to know the coaching staff, her teammates and what is expected of her, I think she now feels comfortable and has adjusted very well,” Stansell said.

As the season has progressed, Stansell said she appreciates the relentless effort that Stevens has on and off the field.

“I absolutely love the effort Mia brings. She brings it to all aspects of her life though, not just softball. Whether its academics, softball, her job or her extracurriculars, she brings her 100 percent,” Stansell said.

On a personal note, Stansell said coaching Stevens has made her a better coach.

“There is only one Mia in this world and we are fortunate enough to coach her. She came in from the very beginning and made an immediate impact,” Stansell said.

Stevens said she is interested in seeing how the season unfolds and expects so much from her team.

“I’m really excited for the rest of the season and I can’t wait to go out there with my team and show everyone what we can do,” Stevens said.

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