Asher brings fun, skills, passion to CDO 9 - The Explorer: Sports

Asher brings fun, skills, passion to CDO 9

Dorado third baseman, her 'mates aim for a three-peat

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Posted: Wednesday, April 8, 2009 11:00 pm | Updated: 1:27 pm, Mon Apr 18, 2011.

It's immediately apparent that Canyon Del Oro senior third baseman Katie Asher knows how to balance fun with her role as an integral part of the 21-1 Dorado softball team’s quest for a third straight state title (not a second, as previously reported).

"We just finished the dance from Slumdog Millionaire," said Asher on Monday, directly after practice. “We know the whole thing.”

Learning the intricate dance, also known as the "Jai Ho," (viewable at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xPvPUk96vb0) – a series of foot and hand movements, some resembling a boxer’s uppercut — is fitting for the 5-10 senior. She’s been known to hand opponents a knockout blow from time to time.

State runner-up Sahuaro knows that better than most – in last year's state title game, with a 2-2 count and two outs in the bottom of the fifth inning, Asher crushed a home run over the center field wall to tie the game at 2-2. CDO went on to win, 3-2.

For that and a full season of outstanding performances, Asher, led into softball at the age of four by her older sister Brittany, earned second team All-America honors on the Louisville Slugger-National Fastpitch Coaches Association squad, joining teammate Kenzie Fowler as the only two Arizonans accorded that honor, and one of 48 players nationwide to make the cut.

In addition to national recognition, Asher's .476 batting average, 14 home runs (12 in the regular season – a state record) and 39 RBIs caught the eye of Oklahoma State University head softball coach Rich Wieligman, who offered the junior a scholarship she later accepted.

"I went to campus on my unofficial visit and it was just beautiful," said Asher. "(During the official visit), I could also tell the coaches had my best interests at heart."

While her future with the Cowgirl softball team makes Asher "excited, but nervous," her immediate focus is her past and present with the Dorados.

"I don’t want to leave, I just love all the girls," said Asher. "And the team is doing so well; fantastic."

Much of that success is due to Asher herself.

In 2009, Asher has amassed a .400 batting average, an on-base percentage of .465, a slugging percentage of .617 and 18 RBIs.

That reliability, and the leadership that stems from it, is something that CDO head coach Amy Swiderski has come to rely upon from the four-year starter.

"Katie brings a lot of passion for the game," said Swiderski. "She has a great bat, and she’s one of the best third basemen in the country."

"But probably the best thing about Katie is she has a great personality," said Swiderski. “She makes the season a lot of fun.”

"We look to Katie for leadership, she can be counted on to make the right decision and to be responsible," added the coach. "That's what we really look for in our seniors, to guide the freshmen, on the field and off."

It is that combination of athleticism and personal growth that gains some of the highest praise from Swiderski.

"I've known Katie since she was eight years old," said Swiderski. "It's been really great to watch her grow up and mature. She's really developed into an amazing young lady."

Asher's development will not stop with the end of her career as a Dorado, but for the senior, her goal entering the season remains the same now that it is halfway over.

"Go out with a bang," said Asher, who hopes to be a pharmacist after college, with a laugh. "And win another state championship."

Holding up three fingers on her right hand and looking slightly more serious, she added, "Three-peat."

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HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 16

Boys Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Buena, Cienega at Marana

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge, Catalina at Amphi (Silverbell GC)

Catalina Foothills, Pueblo, Sahuarita at Sahuaro

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Rio Rico

Ironwood Ridge at Glendale Ironwood

Swimming (@4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge, Sahuarita at Desert Christian

Wednesday, September 17

Girls Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Rincon at CDO

Ironwood Ridge, Desert View at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Cross Country (@4:30)

Salpointe at Catalina Foothills

Palo Verde, Nogales at Marana

Rincon, St. Gregory at CDO

Sahuarita, Pueblo, Pusch Ridge at Desert View

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Empire at Marana (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

CDO at Queen Creek

Cienega at Mountain View

Sahuaro at Catalina Foothills

Walden Grove at Pusch Ridge

Thursday, September 18

Girls Golf

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Boys Golf

Sahuaro and Salpointe at Ironwood Ridge

CDO, Rincon, Sunnyside at Tucson High

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at Sahuarita

Ironwood Ridge at Sahuaro (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

Catalina Foothills at Rincon

Pusch Ridge at San Manuel

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Marana vs. Tucson at Quincy Douglas Pool

Cienega at Marana

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Amphi

Catalina Foothills at Sahuaro

Freshman Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Flowing Wells at Marana (4 p.m.)

Desert View at Mountain View

Cienega at CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

JV Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Amphi at Marana

Santa Cruz Valley at Pusch Ridge

Mountain View at Desert View

CDO at Cienega

Buena at Ironwood Ridge

Sahuarita at Catalina Foothills

Friday, September 19

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge at Mt. Carmel Invitational (San Diego, CA)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

Football (@7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Santa Cruz Valley

Catalina at Marana

Desert Vista at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Cienega at CDO

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

Saturday, September 20

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Marana at Old Pueblo Invite(Lincoln Park)

Mountain View at San Diego

Catalina Foothills, CDO at Ojo Rojo (Chandler, AZ)

Swimming

Marana at Wolves Classic (Chandler High)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

 

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