When Andrea Hester was younger, her parents had her try the gamut of sports and activities, ranging from dance to basketball to soccer. Through that exposure, she found a love for softball.
“I started playing softball when I was five years old,” says Hester. “My love for softball grew ever since then.”
The Rosary Academy senior has been a four-year varsity player for the Royals, slotting in at both first base and outfield. She enjoys first base because the position allows her to be “constantly in the play.” But she loves the game for the people she’s met.
“The thing that I love about softball is the friendships and relationships that have been formed,” says the 18-year-old. “I know that the coaches I’ve had and the friends that I’ve met I will keep for the rest of my life.”
As a senior leader on the team, Hester values the role of leading underclassmen, and hopes her skill and versatility has set a good example and inspired her teammates.
“Andi combines athletic intensity with sisterly sweetness in a way that really endears her to her teammates,” says Rosary varsity softball head coach, Tom Tice. “She’s fierce on the field, but off it she’s as fun and funny as anyone you’d want to meet. Not many players would lead the team in RBI’s and also be the best dancer.”
Hester admits that her fun spirit can be mired in slumps now and again, and maintaining her positivity has been her biggest challenge in the sport to date.
“It’s hard when you’re in a slump, but you’ve just got to keep on fighting,” says Hester. “You’ve got to get out there and practice. I’ve just learned it’s the best way to deal with it.”
And along with that hard work are the people around her who Hester credits as the reason for her success.
“Working hard will get me to places I never thought I could ever be,” says Hester. “Those people next to me who have helped me throughout the way will sit by me through everything.”
The Yorba Linda resident serves as her Rosary senior class Vice President, as well as a Student Ambassador. Hester also gives back to her community through feeding the homeless and participating in RAD Camp, a summer camp for special needs kids.
Hester will continue her softball career as she heads to Dominican College in New York. There she will study elementary and special education ahead of plans to serve in the Peace Corps. As much as softball has taught her, Hester knows her character has been largely shaped by her parents.
“My dad has taught me to always be positive,” says Hester. “Just keep on pushing, even when life’s got you down. And my mom is the best woman on this earth. She’s taught me to love. Words can’t explain how much they mean to me.”