By Derrick Smith
Success is something that everyone want to be able to achieve. Whether is an adult at their job or a high school student on the field of competition, being their best is something that both strive for. Natalie Garland says that in order to be your best, you have to be willing to put in the work and not give up.
“For me to be successful in sports, it’s been more than just long practices and hard work,” she said. “It is more about being able to lead and be a good example for your teammates. A good team, I believe, always begins with good leaders.”
Garland is a senior at Vinita High School, where she is a two-sport athlete. She plays catcher and second base for the school’s softball team and she is also a member of the golf team. While she is a little newer to golf, softball has been a part of her life for as long as she can remember. She played in her first game when she was five years old.
During her career, there have been people that have made an impact on Garland, both as a person and athlete. She says that she would not be where she is today without those people.
“Some of my biggest influencers are my parents,” she said. “They always support me and are there for me. Also, my coaches, coach Roach and coach Zig, they always push me to my fullest potential that they know I can achieve.”
Natalie and her teammates have experienced some great moments over the years, but she says that there is one win that sticks out in her mind as her favorite memory.
“The highlighting moment in my career was my freshmen year, when we were playing the number one team in our district at the time, Claremore Sequoyah,” she said. “We beat them off a bunt 1 to 0. This was a really pivotal moment in our season and was one of the greatest experiences.”
Away from sports, Garland is the secretary of the Student Council. She is also a member of the National Honor Society, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Leadership Program, and the Math Club.