Pitcher led teammates to 1st title

NORTH AUGUSTA --- Sydney Seigler didn't need to mention it twice.


She told her father she was interested in playing rec softball, and when Seigler was 9 years old, her father came upstairs to her room with a newspaper.

He found a travel team for her to play with.

When Seigler realized she was scared of the ball, she knew her future was either in the outfield or in the circle.

The North Augusta rising senior decided to pitch and has been playing softball ever since, improving as a hitter and pitcher while also becoming a student of the game by watching as much of the NCAA Division I Softball Championship tournament as possible.

This past season, Seigler helped the Yellow Jackets win the Lower State title for the first time as she went 23-6 with a 1.92 ERA while also hitting .413 with 47 RBI. With her strong year, Seigler is The Augusta Chronicle 's pick as South Carolina's All-Area Softball Player of the Year.

"I'll be honest -- this year was a big question mark," she said. "We weren't ranked at all (to begin the season). We had a talented team but I definitely did not expect to be at the state championship at all. Now I'm expecting to be back there next year."

The player of the year in her region and an All-State selection, Seigler often did her best when the pressure was high.

North Augusta lost its first game in the District V playoffs but rebounded to win four games in a row to take the district championship and then won three consecutive one-run games to earn the Lower State championship. Seigler and her team allowed only 10 total runs in those seven games.

Though the Yellow Jackets lost in the state championship series, this year was still the team's best season ever.

Seigler, also a member of Carolina Elite, gives a lot of credit to her father, North Augusta coach Derrick Quinn, her other coaches and teammates for her success. She can also throw 3 mph faster thanks to Denny Tincher, the father of Angela Tincher, who was an All-American pitcher at Virginia Tech.

Seigler, who can throw up to 63 mph, fondly remembers winning the Lower State crown with young girls watching, seeing the looks in their little eyes that they hoped to eventually do the same.

The Yellow Jacket used to be one of those girls, and though Seigler wants to play college ball, she first wants to finish the job at North Augusta.

"It was right at our fingertips," Seigler said. "Knowing that we can get there and what we have to do, I'm fully convinced we're going to be there again next year. And we're going to take it all."

Get to know Sydney Seigler

FAVORITE SPORTS MOMENT: "In travel ball last year we won state. We came from the losers' bracket like we did this year (at North Augusta). We had to beat our rival twice, and we did. It was amazing."


FAVORITE TEAM: South Carolina Gamecocks

BEST ADVICE: "As a pitcher, you have to have a really short memory. I try to keep my composure on the mound -- just keeping my head up."