PELL CITY -- Victory Christian shortstop Destiny Nowlin signed a letter-of-intent to play softball for Judson College during a signing ceremony in the Lions’ auditorium Monday.
The senior, who will be transitioning to outfield at the collegiate level, also had interest from Martin Methodist College (Tennessee) and Blue Mountain College (Mississippi), but she said playing for the Eagles would be the best fit for her.
“I fell in love with the campus, and as soon as I got down there to try out, I just knew it was the place for me,” Nowlin said. “I was waiting for a while to get my offer and I wanted to sign as soon as possible.”
Nowlin, a 13-year softball veteran, added Judson head coach Tom Hannah was able to sell her on the program at her tryout.
“During the tryout, I was the first one he pulled aside,” she said. “He told me I was exactly what he was looking for, and it just sold me.”
Hannah said several factors stood out in his decision to pursue Nowlin.
“We really needed some outfielders,” he said. “First of all, her skill, just how she played stuck out, but the fact that her communication, how she talked to other players there at the tryouts and how she was so positive and helped try to pick everybody out there up (was something we looked for).
“I knew immediately, not only from skill-wise, but just personality and her character, she’s the kind of girl we wanted. I made sure before she left that she knew we wanted her and we were going to give her the most we could give her. We didn’t want her to have any doubts.”
Judson plays in the United States Collegiate Athletic Association, and Hannah said he envisions Nowlin helping to build on what the Eagles have already accomplished.
“We are very successful in softball,” he said. “We finished fifth in the nation last year and we have most of those girls back to try to make a run this year. We really wanted to add some outfielding and some speed to our team that we already have.
“When she comes in next fall, that’s going to be advantageous for us as we try to push to get all the way to the championship.”
Nowlin said her parents, Dwayne and Caren Nowlin, played a big role in her successes.
“They’ve always been pushing me to the best ability that I could always be,” she said. “They’ve been there for me through everything. They’re a big reason why I’ve gotten to where I have.”
With Nowlin having locked in her next destination, she said she’ll continue her focus on helping her teammates obtain opportunities to continue their playing careers.
“I think my biggest goal this year is to be super-encouraging to others,” she said. “Now that I know where I’m going, I want to encourage others to do the same thing, to not give up and to keep going for that goal because it is possible. It’s a lot more possible than people think.”