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Maddi Doane looks to use hitting journal, toughness to continue success at plate for Syracuse

first_img Published on April 8, 2015 at 9:37 pm Contact Matt: mralex01@syr.edu Facebook Twitter Google+ Maddi Doane almost had no choice. Sandwiched between two brothers, there was always a sense of competition. She remembers competing against them in wrestling matches, and it only made sense she would have a future in sports. “Having those two brothers has kind of made me a tomboy,” Doane said. “I think that had a lot to do with me playing (softball).”The freshman said it was here that her toughness really began to build, something she needed as she pushed through recent struggles at the plate. As she worked to rebuild her confidence, Doane focused less on trying to do too much and more on just staying relaxed, which she is able to do by logging her feelings in a hitting journal.Doane started the season batting .359 through her team’s first 11 games, but her average has since dropped to .284. Her first career home run came April 1 against Fordham, and she had four hits against North Carolina last weekend. Doane looks to build off her recent success when Syracuse (14-19, 1-7 Atlantic Coast) travels to Buffalo, New York to face Canisius (14-10, 4-0 Metro Atlantic) on Thursday afternoon.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“I’m able to know what that feels like,” Doane said.”… know what that home run feels like and almost recreate it so that I’m feeling confident in the box.”Doane said she was feeling anxious. She was pressing too hard at the plate, thinking too much and not relying on the techniques that led her to a successful start at the beginning of the season.To combat this, Doane began to log her feelings — whether her thought process, timing or adjustments she wants to make — in a journal, an idea suggested by assistant coach Matt Nandin. Here, she can write and forget. “You want to get to a point where you’re feeling good at the plate,” Nandin said. “It’s important to write it down, what you did, what you were feeling, what your approach was, so when you do start struggling again you can look back.”Nandin acknowledged that hitters need to think. It’s when they start to grapple with a hundred thoughts before the pitch comes that it starts to become dangerous. Head coach Leigh Ross said Doane tries too hard to be perfect and needs to “just go back to having fun.” As soon as the freshman starts to think about the hits she isn’t recording, things start to fall apart. A quick look in the journal, however, can provide the confidence needed to pick things back up.“She likes to think she has a short-term (memory) but sometimes she’ll get really down on herself and that doesn’t help her,” AnnaMarie Gatti, a former high school travel teammate of Doane’s, said. “She just needs to be able to see it because she gets lost sometimes.”Gatti remembers the beginning of the school year when Doane would come into her dorm room. They would talk about missing home and support each other. If their close friendship offered a reprieve from the stresses of moving away, Doane’s hitting journal offers a similar reprieve from the doubts she is facing more of now than at the beginning of the season.After she hit her home run, Doane wrote it down. She said she made note of who it was against and that it felt good coming off the end of the bat. Now when she looks back on her home run, Doane will be able to relive what it felt like and what she did to make it happen. It’s a technique she’s used to get back on the right track at the plate, and one she’ll continue to rely on no matter her results at the plate. “It makes me a lot more relaxed also after the game,” said Doane. “If I have a bad game I’m able to get it out if I have a good game I’m also able to get it out. Just writing down… however I’m feeling in the box.” Commentslast_img read more

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