Ryn McCormick, 10, Edmond, Okla. recently had the adventure of a lifetime serving as a bat girl during the 2019 Women’s College World Series (WCWS). After reaching out to the NCAA organization to see if they even allow or offer the opportunity for girls to be bat girls, Ryn was among many young girls placed in the pool of candidates and was ultimately selected.
Ryn is the daughter of Jeff and Aymelia (Whited) McCormick, Edmond. She is the granddaughter of Joyce Whited and Mr. and Mrs. Wayne Whited, all of Trion; the late Karen and Darrell Deason, Bradenton, Fla. and the late Wes and Karen McCormick of Wichita, Kan.
Each of the eight teams that make it to the WCWS (successfully winning their regional and super-regional brackets that included a total of 64 teams) was assigned a bat girl. Ryn was assigned to the University of Arizona Wildcats under the leadership of Head Coach Mike Candrea who were making their 23rd appearance in the WCWS and first since 2010. Arizona is a traditional powerhouse in the world of college softball.
Ryn’s duties started on Wednesday, May 29 when she attended and helped with the team’s first official WCWS practice in Oklahoma City. Arizona’s first game was on Thursday, May 30 against PAC 12 foe, the University of Washington. Arizona won that game in extra innings 3-1. After the game, the team lifted Ryn up, gave her high fives and slaps on the helmet, and chanted her name giving her credit as their good luck charm as they had not beaten Washington during the regular season contests.
It was amazing to see how quickly Ryn established friendships with the players and how they accepted her as part of their team. Ryn was spotted on TV during ESPN’s coverage of the WCWS multiple times as the team included her in their cheers and rally cap antics. This was much more than just picking up bats and returning them to the dugout . . . this was about a young female softball player actually being on the field of dreams during the national tournament and realizing that the dream is possible by being alongside the college players who were living out their dreams.
Unfortunately, Arizona lost their next game against UCLA and were ultimately eliminated by Alabama.
Ryn plays 9U/10U competitive softball with the Oklahoma Swarm Association out of Perry/Stillwater, Okla.