MELONIE GUARDIOLA ENTERED HER SENIOR SEASON AT EISENHOWER A BATTLE-TESTED CHAMPION.
Guardiola came on in relief for Houston Astros Foundation RBI to help them beat the Atlanta Braves RBI, 5-3, in the 2021 RBI softball World Series in August to claim the tournament championship in Vero Beach, Florida.
Guardiola got the final three outs to get the save and help Houston Astros RBI to its third consecutive championship.
“It felt pretty nice,” Guardiola said. “I was nervous at first. But once I started throwing, I started getting into a groove.”
Houston Astros RBI is part of a Major League Baseball summer softball league for players ages 13-18. Last season was Guardiola’s first with the Astros RBI championship team. She has been playing for Astros RBI for two years.
On the final pitch, Guardiola induced a hit to the third baseman, who threw to first for the final out.
“I rushed to first. I threw my glove in the air,” Guardiola said. “We all kind of got in the circle and celebrated. It was an unforgettable moment.”
Guardiola is no stranger to success in the circle. She has a dominant rise ball and effective fastball.
She was a first-team, all-district selection last year for the Eagles and has eyes on District 14-6A MVP honors and a long playoff run this spring.
“It’s going to be pretty sad when I leave, leaving all my friends,” Guardiola said. “I’m just going to go out and give it my all this whole season. It’s a lot of fun to play softball at IKE, making a lot of new friends. It makes the game more fun to play when you’re really close to people.”
Guardiola has two college scholarship offers from Weatherford and Missouri Valley but remains uncommitted.
“It’s a relief I don’t have to worry about not playing softball in college,” she said. “I know I’m going to play somewhere.”
Guardiola first started playing baseball and then transitioned to softball when she was 12 years old. Pitching is all she’s ever really known.
“I just have to have confidence in myself that I’m going to throw strikes and not overthink things as much,” Guardiola said.
Guardiola admires Major Leaguers Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros and Javi Baez of the Detroit Tigers. She idolizes Olympic softball star Rachel Garcia.
Once her final pitch for IKE has been thrown, she hopes to leave the same imprint at Eisenhower that they have left upon her.
“I want my coaches and teammates to remember how I played at IKE,” Guardiola said. “I want them to remember how I helped the team.”