SFU softball player takes the ball -- the baseball -- for Scottish team

The journey from the pitching mound to home plate can sometimes be a long process of signs, checks and grips.

It's a lot longer when the route goes from Delta to Douglas College to SFU to Scotland.

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It’s just part of the story for former Douglas College and Simon Fraser University softball player Marina DeAngelis.

The 25-year-old ball player is making waves in the Scottish National League, after becoming the first female to take the mound for the Aberdeen Express baseball team recently.

DeAngelis, who took her softball career to the Northwest Athletic Conference finals as a regional all-star with the Royals in 2013, and  transferred to Burnaby Mountain in 2015, made her first appearance for the baseball Express last weekend in a 20-10 win over the Edinburgh Giants.

Moving to Scotland to pursue her physiotherapy masters at Robert Gordon University, DeAngelis said she expected to put her baseball passion on hold while away from B.C.

“I’d been to Scotland before and looked at schools in Glasgow and Edinburgh as well. I hadn’t been to Aberdeen prior,” DeAngelis told Ryan Cryle of the Aberdeen Evening Express. “I’ve been so happy that I can play baseball over here, because I honestly didn’t think there was baseball in Scotland.”

She wasn’t thrown in to mop up in her first appearance, either. The one-time SFU Clan softball infielder threw 138 pitches against Edinburgh, fanning seven.

A long-time baseball player who played with the B.C. Badgers of the Lower Mainland Baseball League last year, DeAngelis said the level of play in Scotland isn’t the same as at home.
There’s a different range of skill levels to be sure, but it’s a developing sport (here),” she said.

“Back home I started – along with a few teammates – an instructional (baseball) league for girls. Just to get them feeling more comfortable in (the) sport, so they know it’s not just softball, there are other options,” she said. “I’m excited I can get more women and girls involved and grow the sport a bit.”

The Express co-manager was pleased with DeAngelis’ performance in the debut.

“Needless to say, we are very proud of her and her winning effort. We feelt it is important to spread the word about this historic game.”

 

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