With the softball season fast approaching its climax, the women are looking to make a push for the playoffs. To do that they will need to rely on the experience and skill of veteran players like Sable Sampson.
Sampson brings with her a rich background of sports and competitiveness, including a 9th place win at Nationals with her club team, the Red Deer Rage, and a 3rd place finish at Westerns. Growing up as the oldest of five, Sampson claims, “I was basically the tester child for my parents, they put me into every sport until they found one I was good at.” And having four younger brothers helped push Sampson as an athlete, sharing, “all my siblings play sports, so it was a very competitive household."
The pitcher/third basewoman is in her third year of Education at Briercrest, a path she did not foresee when she first enrolled at the college. Like many, Sampson had only planned on doing one year at Briercrest before returning to her hometown of Red Deer and attending the college there. However, after a memorable freshman year and an unfulfilling semester at Red Deer College, Sampson made the decision to return to Briercrest. Sampson explains that she did not expect Briercrest to have the impact that it did, admitting, “I didn’t even know about Briercrest until I did a Google search for ‘Bible colleges in Canada with a softball team’.”
Fortunately for Briercrest women’s softball, Briercrest was the first school she happened across. Sampson not only brings experience to the team but also exhibits leadership qualities on and off the field. “Growing up in sports teaches you a leadership you wouldn’t learn anywhere else-how to be patient, respectful, and a good role model. Those skills I’ve learned in sports have helped me to be an RA and a co-captain on the softball team.”
Her experience on the team and as a student played a vital role in her decision to return, sharing, “here at Briercrest doing team time and praying with my team has helped me realize what I’m playing for, compared to high school where I was just playing for myself or for my team.” A verse that has helped her understand her purpose as an athlete is Deuteronomy 31:6, which reads, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” For Sampson, this verse “applies to me because even though I might come and go places and leave people behind, the Lord never leaves me.”
She plans to finish her degree at Minot State University, and then teach wherever the Lord leads her. Her parting advice to those considering Briercrest is “Check it out. Say you’ll stay for a year because then you’ll stay for three or five. Come check out the team. The coaches are great, [and] you’ll definitely leave with a new meaning for why you play. There’s an experience you’ll have here that’s hard to explain on paper. You’ll just have to experience it for yourself. I think it’s the community, the community here is amazing.”