CWU News

Softball Safari: CWU Softball Players Play and Give Back in South Africa

If you happen to see Kailyn Campbell anywhere in Ellensburg, you are more than likely to see Sammy Morris with her.  Well, unless the 5-foot-3 Morris isn't hidden behind the 6-foot Campbell, then it might take a few seconds.  The future seniors have known each other for 10 years and are best friends.  So when head softball coach Mike Larabee got an e-mail from asking for talented players who may be interested in travelling to South Africa during the summer to play softball and visit Cape Town, the two players agreed to go, but only under one condition.

Morris looked at Campbell and said, "I'll go if you go." and Campbell in turn said, "Well, I'm in if your in."  Which is how their two-week journey to South Africa with Beyond Sports came about.  The players left on June 19 and returned home on July 2, bookended by a pair of 27+ hour travel days.

Beyond Sports is an international education and service-learning organization that uses sports as a vehicle to explore the world and create meaningful cross-cultural relationships.  Beyond Sports take teams from a variety of different sports, but this was the first time they travelled a softball team to South Africa.

Beyond Sports put together enough players to make four teams.  It was no surprise that the duo of Campbell and Morris found a way onto the same team which carried the name "Team Cheetah".

They played three games against teams from the Cape Town Softball Association, but both players agree that the time spent outside of games was the highlight of the trip.

In addition to competition, the athletes provided softball clinics for South African youth; helping develop the sport of softball.  They also spent time learning South African history and culture, visiting Robben Island, home of the prison that held Nelson Mandela for 18 years, travelled to the Castle of Good Hope, the District 6 Museum, hiked Table Mountain and went on a Big Game Safari.

See more of their journey at Softball Safari.

August 9, 2016