Q-and-A with Jenny Van Geertry

By Rick Green

DeKALB — Softball junior outfielder Jenny Van Geertry has consistently been one of best players on the team, batting over .435 this year.

Van Geertry recorded eight multi-hit games, led the team in doubles and triples and received All-MAC second team honors in 2017. She is currently on a 11-game hitting streak. Van Geertry has 12 RBI’s and 35 hits on 80 at-bats to this point.

Q: What are your overall thoughts on the young season so far? Has the tough record been indicative of the teams’ play?

A: We just need to continue to get better. The games we have lost were pretty close. I feel like we will keep going up and keep putting work in. We just need to forget the record and continue to play the game that we know.

Q: Why did you choose to play at NIU?

A: For me, it was the family atmosphere. I instantly felt like I belonged here when I walked on campus. All the people that work in the Athletics department were super friendly.

Q: What were your initial expectations for the season?

A: I just wanted to go out there and have fun and enjoy time with my teammates. I think everyone wants to win the championship, but every game will be what we make of it.

Q: What has been the key for you when you step into the box?

A: I just go up there and be relaxed. Hitting is a very mental game, and finding the strategy to help you relax at the plate is key. Coach Abbott helps with that.

Q: You’ve hit well this season and also have a couple home runs, would you consider yourself to be a versatile player?

A: Yes, I don’t think of myself to be a power hitter. I just go up there, and if I get a extra base hit, so be it. I’m not trying to hit home runs because I just don’t have that power. I’m just trying to make contact and get on base.

Q: What motivates you most to play at a high level every game?

A: My teammates and my coaches they are great. I love the atmosphere they bring to the game. They make it fun, and the coaches push you, so you have a good balance there.

Q: Lately you’ve been hitting leadoff, what do you think of that role?

A: It’s been different for me, I’ve never been a leadoff hitter before. I never really thought of it, I just try to make contact and get on base.

Q: As a junior, do the older members mentor you into becoming a better person on and off the diamond? If so, how?

A: We have a lot of great leaders on this team. [Senior pitchers] Tara [Thacker] and Keegan [Hayes] specifically. They absolutely push the team to be their best every day. People all around are great, even freshmen we can talk to on a personal level.

Q: Do you consider yourself more of a vocal leader or a leader by example? Why?

A: I consider myself a leader by example. I always try to do the right thing and hope for people to follow me. I talk to people more off the field than on.

Q: After leaving NIU, do you see softball in your future?

A: I’m not sure. I think I will always want to be a part of the game. I’ve been playing since I was 5 years old, and it’s part of me. I hope that I can continue to give back to the game.

The softball team will be back in action 3 p.m. Tuesday at Mary M. Bell Field in DeKalb as they host the University of Illinois-Chicago Flames.