Q&A: First-year pitcher Sarah Dawson makes waves


Courtesy of Pitt Athletics.

By Steve Rotstein / Staff Writer

Four games in, Sarah Dawson, freshman pitcher for the Pitt softball team, has already thrown out any assumption that she can’t compete in the big leagues.

On Saturday, Feb. 27, Dawson pitched a perfect game in Pitt’s 13-0 win against Providence College. It was the first perfect game in program history and only her third career start.

Dawson, who grew up in Bridgewater, Massachusetts, said she became a Panther because Pitt had the right balance of athletics and academics.

Now 4-0 on the season, Dawson sat down with The Pitt News to talk about the perfect game, her goals for the rest of the season and how she’s adjusting to the college game as a freshman.

TPN: Was this the first perfect game of your life? What was the feeling like when you recorded the last out?

Sarah Dawson: I threw one or two in high school, but this one means a lot more since it’s college, it’s just a different kind of standard … [This weekend] was kind of surreal because I’m a [first-year], I shouldn’t be doing things like that just yet, so it was definitely really cool.

TPN: What was the key to retiring every batter you faced without a strikeout?

SD: Our defense was flawless. I just wanted to put the ball in play on the ground, make easy groundouts for my defense behind me, nothing hard, just right at them. I wanted to make it as easy for them as possible, and they were flawless behind me. I couldn’t have done it without them.

TPN: What is the hardest part about being a first-year on the Pitt softball team?

SD: Just adjusting. College softball is like big-girl softball, that’s what I call it. When you play travel ball or high school ball, it was kind of like, easier in a way. But here, everybody’s good. You’re not just the good one on your team. Everybody’s just as good as you, and it’s dog-eat-dog, but that’s what’s the best about it. It’s very competitive and people take it seriously.

TPN: What have you enjoyed the most about your freshman year so far?

SD: Just being with my team. We’re like a small family kind of, so any time I get to hang out with them is awesome. We’re just all like a group of best friends, so we have a lot of fun together.

TPN: What do you miss most about being back home in Bridgewater?

SD: The coffee is way better back home! That’s probably the thing I miss most.

TPN: Now that you’ve already thrown a perfect game, what are your goals for the rest of the season?

SD: My goals are to help my team make it as far if not farther than we did last season [regional finals loss vs. University of Michigan], so I want to help them make it to the regional finals and hopefully super regionals.

TPN: Would you say this is the best moment of your softball career so far, or do you have any other memories that come close?

SD: This is definitely the best moment of my college career for sure. In high school, I won a state championship so that’s always going to be close to my heart. Here, it’s definitely the perfect game, but I’m ready to make some more memories with this team.

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