Please introduce yourself.
Hi, my name is Alisa Stuchevsky. I am 17 years old and have been playing softball since I was 13. I live in the central part of Israel and have grown up playing for the Maor Lady Warriors. Since the last two years, I have also been playing in the Senior National Women's League, for a team called the Tigers. I made my Junior National Team debut in 2016. In 2017 I was on the Junior team that played at the World Championship. This year, I will make my third national team appearance, by playing once again in the Junior European Championship. Both for my club teams and national team, I am a pitcher, and a first-baseman, who has also been asked to play third base, short stop and outfield. "Put me in coach, I can play anywhere!"

What made you want to play softball?
At the beginning of grade seven, softball was offered as an "in-school" sports activity. Coming from years of Tennis I figured it was worth giving it a try. Five years later, the love affair keeps growing strong!

Can you tell me something about softball in your country?
Israel has been playing Softball since 1975. The last 10 years has seen big growth amongst our Junior's. We are still looking for our identity, but the level of play keeps getting better and better.
We have a National Women's League, Men's League as well as Girls and Boys Junior Leagues. We currently have five national teams…Women's – Men's – Junior Women – Junior Men and Boys U16. For the first time ever, we are hoping to send a Women's U22 team to this year's European Championship.

How often do you practice with the national team and what do they look like?
With the weather in Israel and the small size of our country, all of our national teams tend to practice September-November, plus March- June. In the Fall, we practice every two weeks. In the Spring, we usually have practices, once a week.
Starting in May, the Junior Women's national team does conduct weekend training Camps…usually two or three of them.

Was it difficult to get into the national team and what is the process?
Over the last two years, our Junior Women's national team has had open tryouts. The process starts in September. Coaches usually make the cuts in December.
For me personally, as one of the two starting pitchers. I am pretty sure both of us had a good chance to make the team.

What's your best experience so far with the national team?
It was awesome to play in Spain at the 2016 European Championship. But travelling to Florida to compete in the 2017 World Championships, was the best experience of my life! Playing for the national team has allowed me to see the world, make new friends and play against the best!

Where do you hope to see yourself in 5 years regarding softball?
If I am allowed to dream…after my army service in Israel, I would love to be playing softball for an American College. Failing that, I would love to be good enough to play for a club team in Italy, Holland, the Czech Republic or Spain. As a student of the game, I could also see myself as a coach.

What is the best advice someone ever gave you?
"You only fail, when you stop trying!"
"There's no crying in baseball!"
"Never give up, there's always a chance you can win!"

Who's your role model and why?
My softball role model, is my Coach, Corey Vyner. He has been around international softball for a long time and has always pushed me and encouraged me to be the best I can be. He has also helped me in starting my coaching career, always being available to offer me advise as both a player and a coach! He Rocks!!!

What do you think is the key to a successful team?
Good Coaches.
Chemistry & good vibes with teammates!
Respect for the game!
A team whose players pick each other up, is a team I want to be around!

- Romy Marinus -