Former local standout embracing new role as Saints pitcher
By Kenny Ray | email@example.com
The Saints softball program recruited local high school standout Jana Owen after two years at Florida Community College at Jacksonville.
Last season Owen pitched 54 innings at FCCJ with 43 strikeouts, an ERA of .298 and an opponent’s batting average of .279. In her two years at FCCJ, Owen combined for six wins and four losses.
“She feels more comfortable with herself then she has in the past. She is happier here and feels more support,” said Head Coach Kristen Overton. Owen will be one of three pitchers this season sharing the role with Sam Boatner and Kristen Chapman, who are both 1-0 so far.
“When she is on she is very good. She has a great curveball, riseball, and changeup. Her movement is probably her forte,” Overton said.
“[Owen] has always been interested in coming [to Flagler] because she is a local,” Overton said.
“I wanted Flagler to have softball for a while. When I heard they finally got it, it sealed the deal.” Owen said.
Owen has a passion to play softball and winning, but she also likes another aspect. “I like my teammates and getting to know people. [Softball] teaches you discipline on and off the field. We are coming together quicker than a normal team and we all stick together like a family.”
Every year a team will get a few new players to carry on the tradition of its past players. Flagler’s softball team has all new players and no softball tradition, but that is not going to stop them.
“We just have to make our own traditions,” Owen said.
Taking the next step from community college to a Division II school can be quite the challenge when it comes to preparation for the game.
“[Coach Overton] strives to make us perfect so we don’t make mistakes in the game. She will put a fire under you to make you want to play harder,” Owen said.
“When [Owen] first got here she was more on the quiet side but now she is starting to come out of her shell a little bit. She is kind of a goof,” Overton said, noting that Owen will play a key roll in the pitching staff this season.