In her last year on the Windermere High softball team, the senior righty has been a force on the mound for the Wolverines
Windermere High senior Katie Benedict is soaking in what’s left of her final high-school softball season, and she’s been solid on the mound for the Wolverines. Benedict also hit the walk-off homer to score the game-sealing run in Windermere’s 4-3 victory over Dr. Phillips March 29.
How did you get started in the world of softball?
I was 8 years old, and I went up to my grandparents’ house, and my dad had videos of him (there) playing baseball when he was younger. I was like, ‘Dad, I want to try that.’ I loved it. I played a lot sports, but softball was the one that fit. I really love the competition, and it’s just fun. It’s so fun, I love it.
What is the toughest part of the game?
Definitely mentality. I had (labrum) surgery last year on my shoulder and that was probably one of the hardest things to get through. Not being able to play for eight months and then coming back — it was really hard.
How did you push through after that surgery?
I had my surgery in October 2017, and I just wanted to get back so badly. I went through physical therapy and sports-specific therapy. Obviously, my coaches here helped me, and my coaches outside of this helped me. My pitching coach kept me doing stuff all throughout (post) surgery. Coming back after surgery it was like, ‘I have a brand-new shoulder, and I kind of don’t know how to use it,’ and wasn’t really sure how it was supposed to feel. First it was batting and then it was throwing and pitching.
Is there someone you admire?
Jodi Bayles. She’s my pitching coach, and she just keeps pushing me. She always said, “Katie, you’re going to go somewhere,” and it’s coming true.
How do you balance travel ball, softball season and school?
I’m not in travel right now; that will start around graduation. It’s hard to balance everything, but it’s definitely helping me prepare for college right now with graduating and getting everything done. Balancing everything — SGA, NHS and this — it’s been a lot, but it’s been a good thing to do.
What are your post-graduation plans?
I am going to play for Pensacola State, and I’m very happy to be going there. It’s a family when you go up there. I’m going to study sports medicine.
What do you like to watch on Netflix?
“Grey’s Anatomy.” I don’t know, there’s something about the anatomy of people (that interests me). I love it. If I could be a surgeon and be in school that long I would, but I just don’t think I have the patience to be in school for that long.