VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – Governor Ralph Northam made a stop in Virginia Beach Friday to honor the Virginia Wesleyan University Marlins on winning back-to-back NCAA Division III National Softball Championships.
According to a release by the school, during his visit to the Greer Environmental Sciences Center, he commended the team on their tremendous achievements, noting their 55-3 record in 2018.
He also shared valuable advice on participating in a team sport: don’t ever be afraid to fail, and treasure the lasting bonds formed with teammates, coaches and faculty.
“I always remind people that you can climb the mountain of life, do whatever you want to do, be whatever you want to be,” Northam said. “But don’t ever forget where you came from, and especially don’t ever forget your relationships and your friends.
“And that, at the end of the day, as I say, when they put us in the rocking chair on the front porch, that’s really what you’ll remember most about your life.”
The school said that Virginia Wesleyan softball took its second consecutive national title in May 2018, making it the fourth team in Division III history to do so.
Its members earned a long list of awards along the way, including a second-time NCAA Player of the Year award for sophomore pitcher Hanna Hull; First Team All-American and State Player of the Year honors for senior Cassetty Howerin; Eight All-Conference, three All-Region and two All-America recipients; and National Coaching Staff of the Year honors (as well as conference, region, and state) for Head Coach Brandon Elliott ’03 and his staff.
Northam had just one last question for the team.
“Are y’all going to make it three in a row?”