SPORTS BABE OF THE DAY Presents: Amanda Kamekona, National Pro Fastpitch, NY/NJ Comets, Second Baseman, @ABruinAK47
With Spring just around the corner, softball/baseball home openers are a matter of weeks away. This means life is likely going to get a lot busier for NY/NJ Comets second baseman Amanda Kamekona. Rumoured to be one of the most productive hitters in National Pro Fastpitch (ranking in the TOP 10 in home runs AND slugging percentage), this sports babe is not only a player AND a coach. How does she balance the two, and make time for herself?
19 QUESTIONS WITH AMANDA KAMEKONA
1. Playing ball has taken you all over the map, where do you currently call home?
Etowah, NC… 20 mins from Asheville.
2. What did you study at UCLA?
I received my B.A. in Sociology.
3. You started off playing baseball with the boys, as many girls do at a young age when they are looking for tough competition. Do you prefer playing ball with the boys or girls?
I think there are advantages in both sports…. I definitely had a hard time relating to girls when I first switched over. Without Baseball I wouldn’t be the Softball player I am today… but I love my baseball and softball teammates equally.
4. What was the hardest thing to get used to in the switch from baseball to softball?
THE RISE BALL… oh, and bunt coverages. Took me forever to understand that concept that in fastpitch… 2b covers 1 on a bunt. When I first switched over I looked at the pitcher like “Why aren’t you covering 1?!”
5. Do you have any pre-game rituals? If you are nervous before a big game, what do you do to calm your nerves?
I take a nap, do my make-up and listen to music… Usually when I feel nervous, I meditate or check into my breathing. Ken Ravizza helped a lot in my collegiate days when we talked about the Mental side of the game…and the BIGGEST thing to check into in a stressful situation (softball or not) is to BREATHE!
On the field… nothing like making a web gem.
7. Being the head coach of a college team is a huge accomplishment, especially at your age (CONRATS!). What is your favorite part of being a coach? How hard was the transition from player to coach?
THANKS! I love being able to give back to the game and help develop the next generation of softball-ers. I think my most favorite thing about coaching is finally seeing one of your kids have that “AH-HA!” MOMENT, (like in Despicable Me when Gru says: “LIGHTBULB!”) and you see them get the payout from all the hard work they’ve put in. The transition from coach is player is easy… I think about it as putting on different hats. When I’m wearing my coaches cap, it’s all about the girls and giving back, and then when I take the cap off and put on my Game bow, it’s ME time.
8. Have you suffered any major injuries that have held you back?
::knock on wood:: The most significant injury I’ve experienced was a broken hand my sophomore year of college. I missed about 3 weeks of play, and it was the most educational 3 weeks of my life. It really opened up my eyes to how difficult we make the game sometimes. It’s crazy how much you can learn when you step back and just watch without the pressures of the daily grind.
9. When it comes to the MLB, whose your team? Favourite player?
LOVE THE YANKEES! My favorite player(s) are Derek Jeter and the Wizard (Ozzie Smith)
10. Is there a specific stereotype about your sport that drives you nuts?
Yes…. a lot of people like to say Baseball is harder than Softball. While I believe both are equally challenging, I would definitely agree stepping in the box and trying to hit off Abbott or Cat is definitely one of the most difficult things I can say I’ve experienced in my life.
11. What would your ultimate accomplishment be in softball?
Whenever I decide to retire feel like I’ve left it all on the field and have no regrets. In addition to giving back to the game that has given so much to me.
12. Standing in front of a ball coming at you at the speeds it does would scare the daylights out of most people. What scares YOU?
Sharks… no clue why. Scared to death of them
13. So…any tattoos?
14. Do you have any guilty pleasures?
Tattoos… and junk food. Who loves sugar??! –>this kid<–
15. If you could travel to any one place in the world, where would it be? This is a toughy… I’m a little homesick at the moment so I’d say Sunny Southern California to visit my fam-bam.
16. What’s your absolute favourite thing to do/hobby outside baseball or sports?
I love to scrapbook, journal and READ!
I love nights in…. I can watch movies for days…..
18. Overall, what do you want to be remembered for?
Playing 100% every single game.
19. Who would you suggest to be the next Sports Babe of the Day?
Alisa Goeler… SHES HILARIOUS! LOVE HER TO PIECES!
Thanks Amanda! Glad we caught you before the seasons starts! Here’s to home runs and championships…Good luck this season!