« Softball 2015

Kathlyn Medina

School

Florida

Position
Shortstop
Major
Anthropology

Classroom

Medina was named to the 2014 SEC Academic Honor Roll and will complete her Anthropology degree at UF in Summer of 2015.

Character

Head coach Tim Walton describes Medina as a blue-collar athlete who works hard at her job and leaves it all out on the field. As the Gators’ best defensive infielder, Medina inspires her teammates to elevate their play in the field. One of Medina’s best characteristics is her positive personality; in the field, in the dugout and away from the diamond, Medina promotes a positive attitude. That enthusiasm and optimism is infectious, and her leadership makes Medina well-respected by her teammates. Entering her senior season on a team with six freshmen, the California native can connect with four fellow teammates from the Golden State and make sure everyone has a positive attitude, even when they are thousands of miles from home.

Community

One of the most important initiatives for the Florida Softball program is a presence in the community, and the Gators fulfill the expectation weekly through a number of service projects. A notable project Medina and the rest of the Gator Softball family took part in was spending time with Heather Braswell, an adopted member of the Gator softball team through Friends of Jaclyn. FoJ pairs children with brain tumors with athletic teams for both support and awareness. Heather joined the Gators in 2010 while battling cancer and became a mainstay in the UF dugout and locker room on game day. Florida’s impact on Braswell became a local story in the fall of 2014, when doctors found another brain tumor after Heather had been cancer-free for more than five years.

Excerpt from the Gainesville Sun: “There was no softball game that day, but Heather and her mom came to the stadium to drop off orange-and-blue shirts Heather designed for the team. The back of the shirts say ‘Cancer messed with the wrong girl.’”

Braswell passed away in March of 2014. Less than three months later, the Gators won their first National Championship. Medina and several of her teammates have said that the memory of Heather drove them to win. Through UF’s Goodwill Gators program, Medina and the Gators participate in a number of community outreach programs including Gator Tracks (shoes for needy children), Climb for Cancer (field day event with cancer patients), the Major League Baseball Urban Youth Academy and much more.

Competition

A brilliant fielder, Medina has been described by Coach Walton as the leader of the Florida defense. In 2014, the shortstop had a hand in 10 of the Gators’ school-record 28 double plays. A quiet but vital contributor at the plate, Medina owns 38 career sacrifice hits to rank second all-time in the Gator record book. Her most memorable offensive game came in April of 2014 in the middle game of a three-game weekend series at Texas A&M, when she hit a grand slam and started a four-game hitting streak to clinch the series victory and put her team in position to sweep the series, which the Gators did the following day. In addition to her role as the defensive leader of Florida’s record-setting infield during the 2014 National Championship campaign, Medina also acquired international experience when she suited up with Mexico’s national team during the World Cup of Softball and the Canadian Open Fastpitch International.