SEATTLE - For UW softball catcher, Morganne Flores, she's soaking up every moment being a part of the team. Flores was recently nominated for the Seattle Sports Star of the Year Award, Women's Sports.
"I’m trying to take in every moment and appreciate every pitch that I get," said Flores.
The reigning Johnny Bench award winner, as college softball's top catcher, Flores brings an impressive resume to the field. She recently drove in seven runs in another win for the No. 5 ranked University of Washington Huskies.
"Just the communication, she displays with us pitchers on a day-to-day basis, I think is so comforting as a pitcher. Knowing I'm going to go out there and do my best, but I know that whatever happens, she’s going to have my back," said Brooke Nelson, a fellow teammate and pitcher for the Husky softball team.
Flores is a nominee for the Seattle Sports Star of the Year Award, Women's Sports, something her coach attributes to her legacy on Montlake.
"She’s been a mainstay in our offense and just a steady defender for us behind the plate and she deserves this honor," said UW softball's head coach, Heather Tarr.
Entering the 2021 season, Flores is already UW's all-time leader in postseason home runs. The graduate student’s journey has taken unexpected turns, including a torn ACL that ended her 2018 season before it even started.
"For Morgan, it was a trying time, and definitely nothing that she’d experienced before in her life. She’s better today because of that, and we have her an extra year today, because of that. So we’re definitely grateful, at the time we weren’t, but we knew there was a silver lining and we’re experiencing that right now," said Tarr.
Flores said the experience with her injury taught her a lot, including a different way to support her teammates and how to contribute when she wasn’t on the field.
"I've definitely gained a different perspective in that year, which I'm glad. Because, now I feel like I'm better equipped to help my teammates that actually go through that," she said.
Before leaving UW, Flores said she intends to help her team in one last milestone.
"Our goal is to win the last game played in Oklahoma City in the College World Series," she said.
With her six years as a UW Husky coming to an end, this All-American is looking at her final opportunity through a different lens.
"I just have a new appreciation...you just never know when it could be taken away or cut short. I’ve never felt more motivated and more appreciative in my whole life to play something that I love so much," said Flores.
Flores’ honors don’t end on the field. She says she's in the second year of her master’s program and will be done next quarter.
As for the winners of the Seattle Sports Star of the Year Awards, those will be announced Saturday, February 27th.