Throughout Jamie Wang’s high school softball career, she established herself as one of the top pitchers in the area. But, it was in Wang’s final season with National Cathedral when she received her biggest honor yet.
Wang was named the 2019 Washington, D.C. Gatorade Player of the Year for softball. It’s an award given to the best player in the state.
“Winning this award means a great deal to me,” Wang said. “[It] serves as a capstone to my high school career.”
Wang, who was named the D.C. State Athletic Association Player of the Year and received a First Team All-Met selection, was a dominating force on the mound. Wang went 10-4 and posted a 1.74 ERA to go along with 168 strikeouts. Wang was just as much of a threat at the plate, registering a .560 batting average and 22 RBI.
“As the pitcher, I must trust that my defense will always have my back,” Wang said. “I had great faith in my teammates and I am grateful to all the coaches, including my parents, who have taught me to pitch, hit and all the other skills required. Hard work helped to build my skills, focus, and confidence.”
Wang’s high school softball career ended on a high note, as she threw a complete game while striking out 13 batters to lead National Cathedral to a 2-1 victory over Georgetown Visitation in the DCSAA title game. It was the Eagles fourth straight conference championship.
“It’s always rewarding to win, especially as a senior and during my last year representing my high school,” Wang said. “We seem to always run into our strong opponent Georgetown Visitation in these tournaments and I wanted to end my career on top.”
Softball wasn’t the only sport Wang thrived in. Wang spent time playing volleyball, basketball and even squash. Playing multiple sports was challenging, but it taught Wang how to balance her time.
“During the fall season when varsity volleyball and travel softball coincided, I had the most challenge balancing my schedule,” Wang said. “I was forced to take advantage of my free time and plan ahead for homework and other commitments.”
Wang was able to find that balance between athletics and schoolwork, maintaining a 3.7 GPA.
Wang developed an interest for squash when she was venturing to play another sport after getting a concussion while playing basketball.
“During freshman year, I had to overcome injuries including a concussion incurred during varsity basketball season,” Wang said. “So sophomore year, I decided to try squash.”
Wang fractured her wrist during her junior year, which forced her to play squash with her non-dominant hand. Wang didn’t allow the injury hold her back, as she won the most matches on the National Cathedral squash team that season.
“This injury caused me to struggle with opposite footwork, mixed up my hand-eye coordination, and altered the accuracy and power of my shots,” Wang said. “I was determined to contribute and arrived early to practice.”
Wang has used her passion for sports to help youth and non-profit organizations. Wang has taken photos and designed logos for the Washington Nationals Baseball Academy website and the Little League. She even helped launch a social media program for the Board of McLean Youth Athletics.
“I’ve been able to infuse my love of sports into many aspects of my life,” Wang said. “To combine my interests in sports, art, and writing, I volunteer and design logos for sports organizations such as Little League, USSSA and NFCA and nonprofits UNESCO and Community Empowerment. I have designed over 20 pins, banners, program covers, and scarves and took photos for the Washington Nationals Baseball Academy website.”
When Wang wasn’t doing schoolwork or going to practice, she would make ceramic artwork to fully relax herself.
“Art is the one area of my life where I can fully relax,” Wang said. “Two summers ago, I attended a six-week full-day art camp to develop my skills in drawing, painting, and printmaking. Last summer, I took two ceramics courses to continue practicing the skills I had learned in high school.”
Wang will be attending the University of Pennsylvania in the fall. She plans to major in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering with a concentration in Material Science.
“In college, in addition to majoring in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, I would like to also concentrate in Materials Science and Engineering,” Wang said. “I first became fascinated with material science when working with ceramics. I explored different properties of clays and glazes, along with different methods of manipulation.”
While Wang is in college, she wants to learn how to combine her love for sports, science and art to make athletic equipment.
“Sports have defined me and my path,” Wang said. “One possible intersection of engineering, material science, artistic design, and my athletic interest would be to work in a field that ensures safety, boosts efficiency, and increases ability in sports equipment.”