Ethan Butler says his parents always used to joke that he was born with a baseball in his hand. It is a sport that Ethan has been passionate about for as long as he can recall. As a freshman on the varsity team, it is evident that his years of hard work have paid off, but it has not been without challenges.
“There were times when I would really struggle while pitching. I'd throw a lot of consecutive walks or hit a batter with a pitch. I'd really put a lot of pressure on myself and beat myself up,” said Ethan. “Now, I really focus on my thought process and think positive. When I do make a mistake, I try to visualize it and fix it on my next pitch.”
Ethan, who also played basketball on the junior varsity team this year, said what he enjoys most about sports is the team aspect. “You get to hang out with guys with like interests and work toward a common goal,” he said. “Plus, joking around is always fun!”
With college a few years off, Ethan is currently focusing on bringing home to Sandpoint a state championship.
“I have played baseball with a great group of guys for years, and I believe we can make this happen for our town.” And there is no doubt with his passion and talent that he will achieve his goal.
Ethan has already learned much from sports, and one lesson in particular will carry not only him, but his teammates, far.
“A life lesson I've learned is that no matter who is out on the field or court, you can believe in them and they will get the job done … but the most important is believing in yourself to come through for them and yourself.”
Jason Duchow Photography
Senior Tanis Davis has played softball for seven years and is grateful for the relationships she has built along the way.
She shares that what she enjoys most about the sport is having a team that supports her, and this year was especially memorable.
“I feel that my senior year was the best year yet because our team was very supportive,” said Tanis, who plays third base and pitcher.
Her coach, Elizabeth Hawkins-Williams, praises Tanis’s effort and ability.
“She has always been one of the hardest working players in our program. She leads by example and is a team player; that’s why we made her a captain this season,” said Elizabeth. “She has a great attitude and has really worked to improve her mental game. All of those things lead her to the success she has had on the field.”
Tanis led the team in almost every offensive category and has tied the single season homerun record this year with four home runs. “She broke the single season slugging percentage this season with an SLG (slugging) percentage of 0.800 and had 24 strikeouts this year, which is a huge jump over the past seasons.”
Looking ahead, Tanis will attend North Idaho College where she will study phlebotomy. “I love helping people, and that’s why I want to be a nurse,” she said of her ultimate goal.
Tanis shares that the one important lesson she has learned through softball is to always use what she refers to as “process steps.” It is a lesson that has obviously served her well!