Article, 2011 Season - Ohlone College Renegades Women's Softball

Jessica Varaday is Tri-City Voice Athlete of the Month

Friday, April 1, 2011—Reprinted from Tri-City Voice Sports.

Jessica Varady, a sophomore softball player at Ohlone College, has been named the Tri-City Voice Female Athlete of the Month for April, 2011. This the second time Varady has won the TCV FAOM award as she also won it in April 2010.

Jessica Varady winding up a pitch.—Photo by Don Jedlovec.

Varady is a 5’4” starting pitcher on the Renegades’ softball team and is the workhorse of the pitching staff. She has pitched in 20 of Ohlone's 27 games, starting 19 of them. Her record is 17-3 with 1 save and 15 complete games. Varady has posted a 1.55 ERA while recording 126 strike-outs and giving up just 30 walks over 121 innings of work. Varady is also the lead off batter for Head Coach Donna Runyon and is batting close to .360 with 6 doubles, 3 triples, 1 home run, 8 stolen bases, 16 RBI's and 24 runs scored.

When Coach Runyon was asked to commit on Varady so far this year, she said, "As a captain, she leads by example and refuses to be outworked in practice and games. Last year she led the team in almost every category and was named Pitcher of the Year for our conference and later named to the All State Team. She sets high standards for herself and works hard to achieve her goals. Her demeanor and persistence to [get it right] makes her a great competitor."

Ohlone has won eight straight Coast Conference North (CCN) Championships under coach Runyon and Varady hopes to lead her teammates to a ninth consecutive title and a place in the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) Tournament in May. Renegades have an overall record of 21-5-1 and are 9-1 in CCN, tied with the College of San Mateo. Top 2 teams are automatic qualifiers to the State Tournament with the ultimate goal being crowned 2011 CCCAA State Softball Champions.

Varady graduated from Livermore High School in 2009, is the daughter of Nancy and Scott Varady of Livermore and her older sister, Andrea, played two years of college softball at Patten University in Oakland.

Jessica Varady winding up a pitch.—Photo by Don Jedlovec.

When advised of her award, TCV asked Varady the following questions followed by her responses:

Tri-City Voice: Now that you are a sophomore and in your second year at Ohlone, what has been different from your freshman year?

Jessica Varady: Being a sophomore is definitely harder then being a freshman. One of the reasons is competition. Last year was hard but this year our team got stronger and better. I have also learned "not to be a B3, but to be a T3" - Sue Enquist.

TCV: What have you learned that you did not know last year, in both softball and other activities on campus.

JV: I have learned a lot from last year, and still learning things till this day and beyond. This year I worked on getting stronger and better mentally and physically on and off the field.

TCV: What have been your favorite classes this year and why?

JV: My favorite class so far in college has been psychology. I enjoyed learning how people think and feel in different situations.

TCV: Previously, you mentioned, field biology, art and kinesiology as possible professions. Are you still interested in any of these or have you added something else?

JV: I am still interested in kinesiology but I would have to wait until I finish playing softball in college to start. Now, I am interested in Child Psychology and Criminal Justice.

TCV: Did you play summer ball last year and will you this summer?

JV: I did not play summer ball last summer. It was my first summer off in eleven years. Even though I didn't play, I did work out at Athercare in Castro Valley.

TCV: Did you work in a part time job last summer and will you this summer?

JV: I worked full time in the summer as a pitching coach. I am still teaching but now part time.

TCV: If you did and/or will this summer, in what kind of job?

JV: I will have the same job (pitching coach) until I leave for school in the fall of 2011.

TCV: Have you decided on a four year school this coming fall, 2011?

JV: I have not decided on a four year I will be attending in fall of 2011.

TCV: If not, what schools are you considering?

JV: I am interested in any school that most importantly has my major and has a great team.

TCV: If you pick a Bay Area school to attend, will you continue living at home with you parents, live on campus or get an apartment?

JV: If I pick a Bay Area school, I will be living on campus or in an apartment near school.

TCV: Do you and any of your teammates hang out together when not playing ball or studying?

JV: My teammates and I hang out more than you would think. We're all very close and always have fun together!

TCV: As a softball pitcher, what pitches do you throw: Fastball, change, rise ball, curve ball, screw ball, and/or sinker ball or drop? Which are your best pitches?

JV: I throw all of the above. I also have a slow curve, screwball and drop. I can not tell you what my best pitch is because it will give away my secret!

TCV: Do you and your older sister, Andrea still play any sports together.

JV: Andrea and I do not play any sports together. We both miss playing softball with each other.

TCV: What is your fondest memory to this point of your Ohlone softball career?

JV: The best memory hasn't happened yet, but from last year I would have to say freshmen initiation.

TCV: Anything else you would like to add?

JV: I would like to say that I am so honored I have been chosen to receive this award, let alone twice. I am very thankful for everything Coach Runyon, Coaches, and Athletic Trainers have done for me. I could not have done anything with out you guys!

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