Camardo in the running for special year

Senior softball pitcher on National Player of the Year

Erika Marion, Assistant Sports Editor

A lot of people want to be noticed at some point in their lives. They want their hard work to pay off.

Julia Camardo is doing just that.

She is one of 50 players on the NFCA’s preseason watch list for Division III National Player of the Year.

She is one of the senior pitchers for the UW-Whitewater softball team. She was also named Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year, first team All-WIAC and first team NFCA All-Great Lakes Region last season.

“It is definitely something to be proud of, but I still aim my focus on team accomplishments and wins and losses rather than personal awards,” said Camardo. “I’m excited to see what this season has in store for our team. We have a lot of experienced returners and it’s up to us to take advantage of that.”

Camardo was named NCAA Whitewater Regional Most Outstanding Player after helping the Warhawks win a regional tournament for the first time since 2014.

“I’m preparing for this season by keeping in mind that this is the last time I can ever practice a sport with a purpose and compete in games that matter as this is my last season of softball ever,” said Camardo. “Each season our main goal is to have everyone on this team all in and play our hearts out and with that, the wins will follow and we will be successful.”

Senior Caitlin Catino, Camardo’s fellow teammate of eight years playing softball together, is very hopeful for their upcoming season. They played together in high school, along with travel softball.

“Playing softball with her is always so much fun because of our friendship and chemistry on and off the field,” said Catino. “I think the best thing about Julia is the light heartedness she brings to our team. Although she takes herself very seriously and works hard every practice and game, she is always the teammate to make everyone laugh and smile. She pushes us every day to not only be better players but better teammates. Out of everyone I know, I respect her work ethic most.”

The words Catino described Camardo as is competitive, intelligent, hardworking, dependable, consistent, talented, kind, trustworthy and so fun to be around.

“No one deserves this award more than her,” said Catino. “The rest of her teammates and I will be cheering her on all season.”

Head coach Brenda Volk has led Camardo to her successes since she started her freshman year in 2015.

“Julia has had a huge impact on our program both on and off the field and has definitely been a big part of our team’s success,” said Volk. “It’s always nice to see student-athletes from your program get recognized for all the time and hard work that they put in day after day and Julia is someone that has definitely worked hard during her entire softball career. Julia is very well liked and respected by her teammates and is someone who would rather have the team succeed over getting any individual recognition.”

The softball team starts off its 2019 season on March 22, facing Hope College (Mich.) and Calvin  College (Mich.) for its first two games in the duration of a 12-game, seven-day start at the National Training Center Spring Games in Clermont, Fla.