Lisa Freihe, a freshman from Doane College, was struggling with her mechanics on the mound.
“When playing positions such as first or third base, my defensive play has been solid. My hitting has been pretty good as well. My problem occurs on the pitching mound where I have control issues. This may come from several different factors. I allowed the three feet increase in distance from the mound to home plate affect more than it should have. The adjustment to the whole college scene may have been a factor. But, the one thing that I think has affected me the most is the fact that my little brother, Scott, was diagnosed a couple of months ago with brain cancer.
Scott and I are very close and being away from the family through this whole thing has been very difficult. I know he is going through a lot right now and I want to be close to him. Even though I donʹt think about him when I am on the mound, it may be affecting my concentration.
In high school I was the main pitcher and pitched all but three games my senior year. They relied on me and I knew I would always be the one pitching and I had all the confidence in my pitching and I knew my team did too. I donʹt feel that I have established any of that at the college level.”
After we worked on several points introduced by Lisa, I received feedback from her coach, Barry Mosley:
“Dr. Crowley, I just wanted to get you an update on Lisaʹs progress. Weʹre heading out on a three‐day road trip (6 conference games) tomorrow, and Lisa is staying back to be closer to her family in case something would happen.
Due to a minor injury to another pitcher on Tuesday, I put Lisa in. She hadnʹt practiced much with the team (only two days,) but I told her she could do it, and get in there and just get it done. She pitched one inning against Hastings and after sailing two balls over the catchers head during her warm‐ ups, she proceeded to strike out the side.
It was great seeing her be successful again. It wasnʹt their weak hitters either; it was their third, fourth and fifth ones. I gave her a high five as she came off the field and told her that I knew she could do it. Iʹm so grateful for your generous assistance. She still might not be out of the woods, but she is making progress, thatʹs for sure. To be honest, I was more happy for her success than anything else that happened that night. It was like a happy‐ending to a movie. Thanks!” ‐ ‐‐ Coach Barry Mosley
Next I heard from Lisa:
“I have been doing really well, but there always seems to be at least one inning that I donʹt do well. It is always in the first couple of innings, and after that I do fine. I feel myself still doubting a couple of pitches while on the mound. It is just certain pitches. But I feel a lot more comfortable after working with you.
And we just received great news with my brother just yesterday. He had an MRI on his brain and what they could tell, there doesnʹt seem to be any sign of a tumor left. We wonʹt know for sure until later today, but if that is the case then he will start radiation.”
We worked some more on her pitching issues and two weeks later I received Lisa’s uplifting email:
“I wanted to let you know the good news. We had two games on Saturday. We lost the first game and we won the second. I pitched the game that we won! It felt so good to be in control again. They only had two hits against me and I had 10 strikeouts! I just want to say thanks so much for everything that you have done for me.”‐‐‐Lisa Friehe