Former Sterling OF Mattie Whalen finishing fine softball career at McDaniel College

by Marc Narducci | Apr 25, 2022
Former Sterling OF Mattie Whalen finishing fine softball career at McDaniel College

Mattie Whalen has received the best of both worlds in attending McDaniel College.

A 2018 graduate of Sterling, she chose McDaniel more for its academic offering but also has enjoyed great success in her four years on the softball team.

Whalen is a four-year starter, a center fielder with great range and some pop in her bat.

She is part of a team that is fighting for a playoff spot in the competitive Centennial Conference, where the top four teams will earn berths. 

“I have had a lot of great experiences,” she said. And the exact reason she chose McDaniel?

“I chose McDaniel more for the education side,” she said. “They have a great kinesiology department and they let you double major and double minor.”

So she took advantage of this, majoring in kinesiology with a minor in education and coaching.

“I could get out of here and work in the phys ed side of high school, possibly back at Sterling and then I am looking to start coaching after I graduate,” she said.

Seeing Whalen play during a recent doubleheader loss at first place Swarthmore, it’s not surprising that she wants to get into coaching.

She is a take-charger player on the field, somebody who can get up and go after it in center field while providing her team some needed power.

This year she entered the week hitting .258 but enjoyed a team-best .421 on-base percentage, thanks to a good eye at the plate with 16 walks.

She also shared the team lead with three home runs, had nine RBI and led the team in both stolen bases with eight and runs scored (23).

Most of all, she has gotten to play a lot of softball. McDaniel began the week 14-19 overall and 7-5 in the Centennial Conference. Whalen has appeared in 32 games.

The Green Terrors, as McDaniel is called, were tied for fourth place with Gettysburg in the Centennial Conference. The top four teams will earn a berth in the conference tournament.

Whalen will be graduating this spring, finishing her education in four years, which isn’t the easiest task for a student-athlete that plays a sport such as softball where there are so many games.

“It definitely is challenging, but our professors do a great job balancing the school work with play,” she said.

Whalen enjoyed a great softball career at Sterling. During her senior season in 2018, the Silver Knights went 18-5 overall and 10-0 to win the Colonial Conference Liberty Division.

She hit .455 with six home runs and 18 RBI that season, according to stats provided by NJ.com.

This year McDaniel has played an ambitious schedule. The season started with playing three games in the Triangle Classic in Raleigh North Carolina (where two other games were rained out).

Then after two home wins over Hood College, McDaniel embarked on its Florida trip. The Green Terrors played 10 games in six days in Clermont, Florida, about a half-hour outside of Orlando.

Since the beginning of April, McDaniel has played six Centennial Conference doubleheaders, in addition to a few nonleague games.

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Due to COVID, McDaniel only played 16 games last season and just four in 2020.

She is likely to play double the number of games this year than she did in 2020 and 2021.

“Playing a full season again is really great,” she said.
What Whalen has accomplished playing in a high-profile Division III conference, has truly been impressive. People don’t realize how much talent it takes to be a college starter, regardless of the division.

“I gave a speech at Sterling my freshman year as a college athlete and my speech was about it doesn’t matter what level you go, you are still playing and there are athletes at all levels that are amazing,” she said.

Whalen fits that bill and she has enjoyed the chance to grow as a student-athlete and experience both the fun and the challenge of playing at the next level.


Author: Marc Narducci

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