West Orange Times & Observer: Sports Spotlight — Karleigh Curtis

Ocoee senior Karleigh Curtis is ready to give it her all in her final year of high school softball.

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  • | 12:44 p.m. February 26, 2020
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A senior on the Ocoee High School softball team, Karleigh Curtis is a four-year player for the Knights and a leader on the diamond. Curtis has been a constant plug up the middle of the infield, and her talents have led her to a future playing softball at St. Petersburg College in the fall.


How did you first get into playing softball?

When I was 4, my older-brother type figures — they’re not actually my older brothers, but I grew up with them — they played baseball and I wanted to do everything that they did, so I started playing baseball. Then when I was about 7 or 8 they were like, ‘You need to go to softball, because it’ll get you into college,’ so I went into softball.


What would you say has been the biggest change that you’ve seen in yourself since your freshman year?

Probably my confidence. It’s been up and down with that, though. My freshman year I came in and everybody thought I was raw, so my confidence was up, but then I would get down on myself when I messed up. Now I’m at a good point with it.


When you do hit those low moments, how do you get past that mentally?

Honestly, practice. If I have a bad game hitting wise, I’ll come out here and I’ll hit until I’m feeling better with it. Fielding wise, I’ll just come out here and take ground balls over and over until I’m confident that I’ll do better next time.


Is there a highlight moment that stands out to you?

Last year when I came back from my concussion, my first game back was probably one of my best games that I’ve played with this team.


What is your favorite part about playing your position? The hardest part?

My favorite part is working out the middle and turning double plays — when they’re good, they’re good. The most challenging part is probably being able to cover as much ground as you can, because between me and my other teammates there is a lot of space there.


What would you say is the most challenging aspect about playing softball in general?

I’ve been on a whole bunch of different travel ball teams and there have been ones that I have been on that were supposed to get me to college, and I never got any looks. Basically, the most challenging part was deciding if I wanted to continue to go to college and having the confidence to do it, and I did. 


What are the best words of advice you’ve been given about softball?

The most common one is, ‘Don’t let what other people think bring you down — don’t let anything else affect you.’ If you have the drive to do it, and the want to do it, don’t ever stop.


You signed on to play collegiately at St. Petersburg College. What was it about the school that drew you to it?

Coach Bre — the head coach — I love her and everything about her. The area is by the beach, and I knew I didn’t want to go to a big school, and when I toured the school it was perfect. When I was there everything felt right. 


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