April 9, 2008
Michelle Smith has not missed a beat after a very stellar high school career. She has been able to play in every single game during her college career -- all 213 games. After stacking up awards in high school, she has done the same in college, as she has received many high accolades, including NFCA second-team All-American, first-team All-Pac 10, and back-to-back All-Pac 10 honorable mention selections.
Smith started her softball career at Agoura High School, in Agoura Hills, California. She was a four-year letterwinner and four-time team MVP. She captained her team during her senior year, while being a two-time first-team All-League selection. She was also a two-time Marmonte League MVP.
She was named the 2004 Ventura County Player of the Year, as well as the 2004 All-Area Player of the Year. She was a two-time first-team All-Ventura County selection and was named to the Los Angeles Daily News' All-Area first-team during her junior year. During her senior year, she was the first-team All-CIF pick and Cal-Hi Sports All-State selection.
She was the Los Angeles Times All-State selection during her senior season. And was named the Los Angeles Times All-Region pick during her junior year. She was also named the Los Angeles Times Regional Player of the Year during her senior year.
"It was a lot of fun," said Smith. "It was not as intense was travel ball or the club team that I played for. It was more just for fun. And to play with a bunch of girls that I grew up with. But I had a lot of fun, especially during my senior year. We made it to the playoffs for the first-time in 10-years."
She was asked to quit softball to play soccer in high school. However, she did not want to do that, and as a result, did not play any other sports in high school.
During the recruiting process, she said she only received three offers. She said she received scholarship offers from UCLA, Notre Dame, and Stanford. She would choose to continue her education and her sports career at Stanford.
"I think it's a great combination of academics and athletics," said Smith. "It's probably the best combination you are going to find anywhere, especially for softball. You get to compete in the Pac-10 Conference, and it's a Top 5 University. It wasn't a difficult choice to make."
As a freshman, she appeared in 59 games, with all 59 games coming in the starting lineup. She hit .322 on the year, with 34 runs scored, and was third on the team with 56 hits. She was second on the team with 11 doubles and recorded one triple and she was second on the team in multi-hit games, with 15.
She led the team with a school-record 19 home runs, while leading the team with 54 RBI's, a .724 slugging percentage, and 20 multi-RBI games. She was tied for third on the team with a seven-game hit streak, and was second on the team with 18 walks. She was ranked fourth all-time with 54 RBI's in a single-season. She was named an NFCA second-team All-American and first-team All-Pac 10 selection.
"It was definitely an honor to be recognized, especially with all the great players that are at Stanford and in the whole Pac-10 Conference," said Smith of her first-team All-Pac 10 selection. "So, it was very exciting."
As a sophomore, she appeared in 60 games, with all 60 games coming in the starting lineup. She split her time between playing third and first base, while being named All-Pac 10 honorable mention. She hit .263 on the year, with 45 hits and 12 runs, while finishing second on the team with 37 RBI's.
She was third on the team with 11 doubles and four home runs, and had 19 walks, which was the second-highest total on the team. She had 12 multi-hit games and 11 multi-RBI games. And had a five game hit streak at the Stanford Invitational.
"Michelle is somebody, who could play both corner positions," said Stanford softball coach John Rittman of Smith playing third and first base. "She has great hands, great knowledge of the game, and is an outstanding defensive player. She has provided a lot of stability for us in the infield. She is also a great hitter."
Last year, as a junior, she appeared in 57 games, with all 57 games coming in the starting lineup. She played most of her time at third base, with some games at first base. She hit .266 with 45 hits on the year, while leading the team with eight home runs and 44 RBI's. She had a .432 slugging percentage.
She had ten multi-hit games and led the team with 11 multi-RBI games. She had a 5 game hit streak, and four hits at the NCAA Regionals. She was named to the Stanford Regional All-Tournament team for her performances in the NCAA Regionals. She was also named All-Pac 10 honorable mention.
"She is somebody for us, who is an outstanding third baseman," said Coach Rittman of Smith playing mainly at third. "And the team needed her to play third base. She has done an outstanding job for us there."
This season, as a senior, she has appeared in 37 games, with all 37 games coming in the starting lineup. She has a .283 batting average in 106 at-bats, with 30 hits, including 5 doubles, 7 home runs, and 56 total bases. She has a .528 slugging percentage, while also having 25 runs and 32 RBI's. She also has 17 walks, 1 hit-by-pitch, and 17 strikeouts.
"I am going to use this year to go out with a bang," said Smith. "There's a pro league, but it's small, and there's not really softball after college. I am hoping to make it an exciting year, and contribute to a National Championship, while having a good time in the process."
She is majoring in human biology at Stanford. She said she choose that major, because since she was little, she wanted to a doctor. And she figured that the best route to take all the classes that she needed to become a doctor was to major in human biology. And it was the major, she said, that she was most interested in that will prepare her for medical school.
After graduation, she will be going to medical school for the next several years. And she will be focusing her efforts of being an orthopedic surgeon or sports medicine. She said gong to medical school will be a lot of schooling, residency, and internships that will probably take up the next 8-years.
"She is going to do fabulous," said Coach Rittman. "She has excelled in the classroom and has prepared herself for life after softball."