Emily Muth, a senior at Round Valley, signed a letter of intent to play softball for the Eastern New Mexico University Greyhounds on Nov. 10.
Surrounded by family and friends in the Round Valley Dome, Muth took the step to formalizing her intent to play after high school. “I am very excited for this opportunity,” beamed Muth.
Muth, an outfielder, said she knew she wanted to play at the next level at an early age when she played on her first travel team. “I love the game and I love the competition. That’s when I knew,” she said.
Muth recalled the experience of spending many hours hitting in the garage, practices, countless miles in a car and playing in up to “20 tournaments a year in Arizona, New Mexico, California and Colorado.”
Her mom, Lisa, describes the role the family filled in this process. “Club softball is definitely a lifestyle that we love,” Lisa said.
Practices in Phoenix twice a week in the summer, “tournaments on the weekends, 115-degree weather, lots of hotel stays, gas money, team dues, etc,” Lisa continued. Perhaps the most difficult part of the process is to “be the parent and not the coach on the drives home.”
Burnout is easy to find and it is important to “keep the love of the game alive” for the kids, according to Lisa.
What advice do the Muths have for others in this process? Emily says to “work hard. Only you can determine your future. If you want it, go for it and don’t ever give up.”
Lisa says to “start now” and join a club or travel team and reach out to coaches. Another potentially overlooked area of focus is “get good grades because even the best athletic scholarships do not cover everything,” says Lisa, who is a counselor at Round Valley High School.
Ray Interthal, coach of the AZ Batbusters, Emily’s 18U club team, participated in the signing via video and said he is “extremely proud of her. Her hard work has paid off.” He closed out by saying ENMU was “getting an awesome athlete.”
When an offer was extended to Emily she “happily accepted” it. “This is my dream school, in an area that I love, close to family and with supportive coaches.”
Emily said her visit to ENMU in Portales, New Mexico, made her feel “like being at home.”
ENMU plays in the Lone Star Conference. Muth said a bonus is that the “games are played in the area where my grandpa lives and he would be able to watch most of my games.”