Bethany Hines: Cameron Aggie Softball

Photo by Drue Watkins

Drue Watkins
Sports Editor

Bethany Hines might be a Cameron sophomore and Early Childhood Education major who loves kids, but there’s more to her than just those simple facts—she also happens to be a student-athlete who plays softball for the Aggies.

Although, for Bethany, softball isn’t just a sport—it’s a huge part of her life. Since the age of three when she first picked up a bat to play tee-ball with her father, she has consistently striven to be the best she can possibly be at it, dedicating years for advancement.

She’s both a primary pitcher and a second baseman on the field, throwing with her right hand but batting with her left, and she wouldn’t have it any other way. She said there’s no other position for her, as pitching allows her to be in complete control, making it her favorite.

“Sometimes I get stuck in the outfield and that’s fine,” she laughed. “I couldn’t play shortstop or third—I definitely can’t catch.”

Competitive, smart and humble, there is a fire in Bethany’s eyes when she talked about her teammates, her sport and her goals; it became both inspirational and spirited. In fact, her teammates are the primary reason for her enjoyment of the sport; they’re the driving force.

“My teammates are the best,” she said. “Just getting to play our favorite game together, it’s the greatest part. The friendships you make, nothing can beat those. Oh,” she added with a smile, “winning is always nice, too.”

Winning for Bethany isn’t everything, but it’s a massive force for her as a player and as a person. She said she was practically raised to be competitive, and that her love for the game can’t always trump that.

“If you aren’t out there to win, why are you playing?” she asked. “Yeah, you play for fun, but at this [collegiate] level you’re really playing to win. I feel like you have to be competitive or else you can’t go any further.”

When Bethany is out playing on the field, it isn’t believable that she suffers from anxiety, especially with a record of 7-3 on the season as a pitcher along with 56 strikeouts. As impactful of a player as she is, there’s just no avoiding that feeling during games, even with her competitive streak. She said nervousness hits her before every game, and there are only a few ways for it to get better.

“It doesn’t matter how big or how small the game is,” she said, “I just get nervous. I calm myself down by laughing with my team, or turning around and looking at them. Seriously,” she assured, “that sounds cheesy, but it’s true.”

After graduating from Washington High School outside of Norman, Oklahoma, Bethany felt Cameron was ideal for her. She got a good vibe from her visit, and her softball experience at Washington helped her adjust to Cameron’s team—especially mentally. She doesn’t want any of it changed.

Softball has always come naturally to Bethany, especially because of her father. As a huge influence, his guidance, encouragement and compassion has aided in the establishment of Bethany’s strong mentality. She gives him loads of credit.

“Softball has always been our thing,” she said, “ever since I was little. He’s a big motivating factor in it.”

Even though Bethany has been extremely successful as a student-athlete, she still has challenges to face during her next two years, both physically and educationally. Her primary difficulty has been with time management, what with the juggling of games, practice, a social life, homework and, most importantly, sleep.

It isn’t easy for her to get through the semesters with so little time.

“I use a planner thing,” she said. “It helps me figure out how to get things done by certain times and keep everything organized.”

When Bethany isn’t striking out batters or working on her homework, she mostly finds herself hanging out with her friends, visiting with her dog Archie, and eating her favorite food, which just so happens to be popcorn.

Although, she also really enjoys Mexican cuisine.

“Oh,” she added quickly, “I also play Fortnite. Note that and put it in somewhere. Fortnite and popcorn.”

Despite being athletic, she admitted she doesn’t eat a healthy diet, and most certainly doesn’t enjoy running. She did explain that she plans on learning to enjoy running, though, for when she’s done with softball.

“I have to find a way to stay in shape,” she said. “I do like lifting, so that helps.”

It’s no surprise to learn Bethany has plenty of long-term goals for herself, such as running a marathon, being on a reality television show, gaining her master’s degree in Administration, becoming a teacher and ultimately starting a family.

However, regarding short-term goals, she really wants to see herself and her teammates make it to the National Tournament. To get there, Bethany knows she must work hard and continuously refine her skillset.

“You can always improve on everything,” she said. “I’m going to try to get my drop ball figured out, pitching-wise, and incorporate a better rise ball.

“Also, I can always get better in the batter’s box.”

The Cameron softball team is performing very well this season, sitting at 19-9 on the season, and Bethany knows her team can continue playing up to standard as long as they stick together.

With all the aspirations she carries, it’s clear there is a path she wants to follow—and that path will hopefully lead her to more success.

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