Lakeland Catcher Works Tirelessly at Her Craft

Lakeland’s Amber Badillo focuses at the plate during a recent game. Credits: Rick Kuperberg

Lakeland senior Amber Badillo is a catcher and team captain on the varsity softball team.

How old were you when you started playing softball and how did you get started?

I was 6 years old when my dad started teaching me softball. I started playing for rec in Shrub Oak.

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What do you think are your strengths as a softball player?

My strength as a softball player would be my catching. I have put a lot of time and effort into this position. I really enjoy being a catcher and love being in control of the game.

As a senior on the team this year, how do you see your role as a leader?

Being a senior and a captain, it is my job to keep my team motivated and on point. I try to help the younger girls in any way possible. I also try to be a good role model for the underclassmen.

What is your favorite team activity, pregame or postgame ritual that you share with your teammates?

Right before the game while we are stretching we go around and each one of us says what we did yesterday. We call it “yesterday I.”

Who is your biggest role model over the years and what have you learned from them?

My dad. My dad has been my biggest fan since the beginning and always had my back with anything on and off the field. He is my biggest supporter and I don’t know what I would do without him.

Tell us one thing about yourself that not a lot of know?

I am obsessed with cranberry juice.

What does it mean to be able to play for Lakeland?

To play for Lakeland you just have to be determined and be able to work hard. We know what goal we have to reach this year and every player has been doing their part for us to be able to reach it as a team. (Our goal is) to win a section championship.

Do you know what you want to study in college? If yes, what and why?

I’m not sure what I want to study in college yet but I want to do something with science.

Who is your favorite professional athlete and pro or college sports team?

It’s probably Alex Rodriguez and my favorite sport team is the Yankees.

What is your favorite music to listen to warming up for a game?

I usually listen to Chance the rapper.

If you could have one super power, what would it be and why?

I would want to fly. I would want this so I can go anywhere I want at any time with no problem.

If you could pick one place to visit on vacation that you’ve never been to, where would you go and why?

I would go to Hawaii, just so I can say I went to Hawaii.

What is your favorite food to eat before or after a game?

My favorite food to eat before a game is an awesome ash with avocado from Lakeland Deli.

Best place to eat in Laleland and why?

Definitely Lakeland Deli because  it has such a huge selection and that special sandwich menu is the best.

What advice would you give to a young softball player growing up in Shrub Oak?

Just to enjoy every moment and have fun playing the sport because it goes by fast.

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