Life after softball; Campbell looks ahead after stellar career

Published 4:15 pm Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Washington native Summer Campbell’s softball career is over and she’s okay with that. In fact, it was her call to hang up her bat and glove after a standout career at Washington High School and Pitt Community College.

The 2019 Pam Pack graduate helped her team go 42-3 her last two years, batted close to .500 for her career and won multiple post-season honors.

She decided to play two more years at Pitt Community College, where she eared junior college All-American honors in 2021 and was All-Region for the season that just ended. She again batted close to .500 and had 19 home runs and 111 runs batted in for her career.

  1. You obviously had a chance to finish your college eligibility at another school. Why did you decide to stop playing?

Summer: It might sound strange to some, but I am looking forward to focusing on something besides softball. I’m not burned out, because I had so much fun playing, but it’s just time to move forward with what I want to do for my career. Softball has always defined my life. Now I’m ready for different experiences.

  1. When did you make your decision?

Summer: I wasn’t sure I even wanted to play after high school, but I decided to go for it at Pitt for two years. I had offers from some four-year schools, Barton being one, but Pitt seemed like the best opportunity. COVID pushed everything back a year and I actually have three years of eligibility left if I ever change my mind. I decided before this season started that it would be my last. I told my coaches before this season that I didn’t want to know if other schools wanted me to come play.

  1. Are you happy with the way things turned out?

Summer: Absolutely. I loved my coaches and teammates and really had fun playing the game. I’ proud I made All-American last year and All-Region this year. I had a strong connection with my teammates and coaches and it felt like one big extended family. The routine of practices, games and off-season workouts was a challenge and it’s a relief to focus on something else.

  1. What’s next?

Summer: I will be majoring in Speech & Hearing Sciences at East Carolina to become a speech therapist. I’m not sure yet if I want to work with kids in a school environment or stroke patients in a hospital setting.

  1. How did you become interested in that field?

Summer: I’ve always enjoyed being around kids and working with them, but I knew I didn’t want to teach and be responsible for 20 at a time. I was part of the Teacher Cadet program at WHS and I saw my friends helping kids with their speech. I was interested and it’s led me here.

  1. Do you see working with kids in a softball setting? Coach Campbell, perhaps?

Summer: I’ve been giving one girl lessons and have really enjoyed it. I’ve heard from two more, so I might have three soon. I’ve also helped out at the Pitt prospect camps, so it kinda comes naturally. I want to pass along how much fun playing softball can be and how building relationships with teammates can last a lifetime. I get really excited when something clicks with a younger girl.

  1. Your younger sister, Laci, was a big part of the Pack’s run to the state championship this spring. Did you get to see her play much?

Summer: Yes, and I think I was more nervous than she was at some of the games. It was great to watch her and the rest of the girls try to win it all. I’m really proud of her and I’m excited to see her play at Virginia Wesleyan in the fall.