Bridget Guiney: The mind behind the mask

The senior softball player is one of the most decorated catchers in Washington

Prairie High School's Bridget Guiney, March 16, 2016 (KOIN)
Prairie High School's Bridget Guiney, March 16, 2016 (KOIN)

VANCOUVER, Wash. (KOIN) — Prairie High School senior Bridget Guiney always takes her father’s advice every time she steps up to the plate.

 “He says, ‘hit the yellow thing.’ [There’s] no hitting advice before games so just hit the yellow thing [is what he says],” said Guiney with a smile.

Prairie High School's Bridget Guiney, March 16, 2016 (KOIN)
Prairie High School’s Bridget Guiney, March 16, 2016 (KOIN)

Guiney’s teammates still remember what she did with that yellow thing in her first at-bat on varsity as a freshman.

“She hit a home run [and it was the] first pitch [of the ball game],” Irene McGuire, a Prairie High School senior, said. “[It was the] first pitch out [of the park]. It was gone. Yeah, and that pretty much set [tone of] the game. And we won that game. We were undefeated our freshman year for our league.”

Guiney helped Prairie punch its ticket to the state championship game that year, where she would hit more home runs.

“That girl can hit, and it’s so amazing to just watch her swing the bat,” said Ari Van Horn, whose Prairie’s head varsity softball coach.

Our athlete of the week started out as a catcher her freshman year, and then played first base her sophomore and junior year. Now she’s getting the opportunity to catch again.

“That’s my love. That’s my passion for the game,” said Guiney.

“People need to notice you – that’s kind of your job as a catcher,” said Van Horn. “And she plays that role so much better than most of the catchers in this league I would say. There’s obviously other fantastic catchers in this league, but Bridget just has that natural leadership.”

“I’ve been putting in the catching work on the side – and for my club team – so it’s not that big of a transition,” said Guiney. “And I did love getting to play first base; getting that other side of the field perspective [was so valuable over the years]. I really got to appreciate what they do over there.”

In the classroom, Guiney carries a 3.5 GPA and also volunteers at a local elementary school.

“I love spending time with the kids, and it’s a great experience for me,” said Guiney.

She also received a full-ride softball scholarship to Robert Morris University in the fall.

“I’m pretty excited for that,” said Guiney.

For now, Guiney is focusing on trying to help Prairie High School grab its first softball state championship since 2006.

“Of course that’s always the goal is to make it to that championship game and we’ve been close [to winning a state title]. We got second [place at state], fourth [and then] fourth [again]. And this year I think we can make a run,” said Guiney.

Prairie High School's Bridget Guiney, March 16, 2016 (KOIN)
Prairie High School’s Bridget Guiney, March 16, 2016 (KOIN)

 

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