GREENVILLE – Greenville senior Karsyn Shaffer intends to help the Muskingum University softball program return to a championship level after committing to the Fighting Muskies Friday evening.
It wasn’t long ago that Shaffer, the daughter of Shawn and Tiffany Shaffer, didn’t think she would go on to play at the college level.
“It’s pretty cool I think,” Shaffer said. “If you would have asked me a year and a half ago if I was going to play college ball I probably would have said no. I would have thought you were crazy. But I’m pretty excited.
“I was playing because I love the game, not to go play college ball.”
With her commitment Shaffer became the third Greenville softball player to make a college commitment this year, joining Mount St. Joseph University-bound Makayla Hanes and Trine University-bound Alli Hill.
Shaffer, who plans to become a high school English teacher, was drawn to Muskingum became of its education program.
“They have a really good education program, which is what I’m going to be studying,” she said. “Plus I really like Coach (Kari) Winters, and I got to talk to a lot of the team, and I really just liked the environment there.”
Shaffer and Winters have talked about restoring Muskingum back to a championship level. The Muskies, who are 12-20 this season, won the NCAA Division III Ohio Athletic Conference championship in 2014.
“I just want to go help them get back to championship caliber,” Shaffer said. “I know when (2012 Greenville graduate) Kelly (Martin) was there they won their conference”
Shaffer is accustomed to winning as she helped lead the Greenville to the regional finals of the Ohio High School Athletic Association tournament the past two years, earning first team GWOC North honors both years. The Greenville senior is playing well again this season as she’s hitting .450 with three doubles and nine RBI in her first 12 games.
“She gets on bases and wreaks havoc,” Greenville softball coach Jerrod Newland said of his starting second baseman. “And her speed is just tremendous. Defensively she does things that are just out of this world.”
With Shaffer pursing a degree in education, Newland envisions her returning to Greenville once her Muskingum career is complete and helping lead the Lady Wave again as an assistant coach.
“She’s going to get into education so I imagine in about five years from now if you marked it down in about 2022 she’s probably sitting on a bucket in the Lady Wave softball dugout, which will be awesome stuff,” Newland said.
Kyle Shaner may be reached at 937-569-4316. Follow me on Twitter @KShanerAdvocate or get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.