Snider settles on St. Thomas for college softball
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Any athlete moving from high school to college athletics is in for a challenge.
Hampshire senior Miki Snider will experience a unique one next year when she heads to the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota.
Snider recently committed to play softball there, just as St. Thomas is getting ready to go from Division III to Division I athletics.
That's quite a jump in competition level but one Snider is ready for.
"I'm so excited to be part of St. Thomas and this program and I'm excited to see what they can do in the Division I aspect," Snider said. "It's a big change going from Division III to Division I and I'm excited to be part of that."
Snider reached out to St. Thomas coach John Tschida this summer while playing for her travel team, the Chicago Cheetahs in Downers Grove.
She's confident the transition will go well.
"The coach is doing everything he can to really work with the girls he already has as well as finding recruits that will be beneficial for his program," Snider said. "We will compete definitely."
Snider, who will play third base or outfield in college, had 101 at-bats as a sophomore at Hampshire. She hit 9 home runs, 10 doubles, drove in 36 runs in 34 games and batted .327 with a 1.118 OPS.
"I am so excited for her," Hampshire coach Kelly Wasilewski said. "One of the hardest working and least selfish kids I've come across."
Snider lost her junior season at Hampshire because of the COVID-19 pandemic. After playing softball since she was 7 years old, it was a hard couple months.
"I really wanted to play with our seniors because a lot of them were my best friends," Snider said. "Now I'm looking forward to our senior year."
Snider's parents, Kevin and Tina, both played sports -- her father cross country and baseball, her mom softball.
She is the youngest of four with brothers Brad and Blake and sister Aly. Blake also attends St. Thomas.
Miki can't wait to join him. She plans on majoring in marketing.
"I loved the coach and I loved the school," Snider said. "It was beautiful and had such a good marketing program. I've always been more of a creative thinker and a good communicator so marketing would be a really good career for me. And I loved the culture the coach has in the softball program. I've been striving for this (college softball) ever since I was 10."