For some athletes, leadership just comes natural. The Holmes County Lady Blue Devil softball team has a four year starter helping lead the way, and outfielder Shelby Clark isn't just taking charge on the field. Some athletes just can't be kept away from the sport they love. For Holmes County's Shelby Clark, the softball diamond is like a second home.
"She's the one that you find hiding in the dugout because she's been practicing and nobody knows she's up here," laughed head coach Stephanie Pippin. "But she's very devoted, and she is a very hard worker."
"It's kind of cool to develop and go from looking up to other people too growing and having to push yourself so people can look up to you as a senior," said Shelby.
Shelby has given her younger teammates a lot to look up to- as she leads the team with a .477 batting average, and this spring, Shelby signed a softball scholarship to play at Chipola College. It's not just on the field where Shelby shines, as she's also a leader in the classroom, as she carries a 4.2 weighted GPA.
"Whenever I was really little, my dad was always big on grades and B's weren't very good in the house," said Shelby. "It started early and I always wanted to do good. I was just competitive and I wanted to have good grades."
"She's just that type of player you look up to and you depend on her," said Coach Pippin. "I don't even give Shelby signs very often because I depend on her to be such a leader, and she takes that role and does such a good job with it."
It's that never quit attitude that's propelled the Lady Devils to their success- because Shelby knows this is her last chance on the field donning a Holmes County uniform.
"Shelby's the type of play that when a fly ball is hit to the outfield, you don't even look," said Coach Pippin. "You just know it's going to be an automatic out."
"You don't want to leave with any regrets," said Shelby. "I don't want to look back and say I could have done this or I could have done that so that leaves more weekend practices and all that kind of stuff."
More weekend practices, but for Shelby, coming to the softball diamond is just like coming home. Shelby said she wants to major in something in the medical field, and right now, she's leaning towards Physical Therapy.