It's awesome knowing hard work paid off

Courtesy of ASU Athletics

Upon hearing the news that she was named Pac-12 softball player of the year, Amber Freeman made her first phone call to her parents.

I got some great and unexpected news Wednesday. Corinne, our sports information director, texted me that morning and said she had a big surprise for me.

I was extremely eager to find out what this big surprise was and went into the team room to find out. She showed me a picture of me with the words in bold, “2013 Pac-12 Softball Player of the Year Amber Freeman.”

Nothing could stop the big smile that spread over my face. This was extremely unexpected, especially only being a sophomore and also just by being in such a tough conference. So many great players are in the Pac-12, so I feel extremely blessed and humbled by receiving this award.

I immediately called my mom and dad back in California to share this awesome news. They were overjoyed and expressed how proud of me they were. That is the best feeling any athlete can receive, knowing they have made their parents proud.

It is also an awesome feeling knowing all your hard work has finally paid off. All the times I stayed after practice to get extra reps and swings now seem worth it.

I am not done. I will continue to be the hardworking, driven and motivated athlete that I am. I am going to enjoy this today, but on Friday the postseason starts.

As coach Scott Woodard said, “Nothing else matters at this point. It doesn’t matter if you had a great season or a bad season. Postseason is when everything starts over. Everyone has a clean slate.”

Nothing is more important than our next game Friday against San Jose State. Until next time, everyone! Go Devils!