Riley Collier is a high school freshman who is already making her mark in the sports arena through her participation as a starter on the Copperas Cove High School JV softball team.
She has been playing softball as a pitcher and first baseman for about 11 years, and has played for so long because of a “love for the game.”
“She works really hard, and she’s dedicated to the sport and is self-critical, which is good when you are trying to improve” said Lucy Bowman, Copperas Cove High School assistant varsity softball coach.
Riley is determined to gain perfection on the field and is regularly seen taking in extra practice to help her improve. “I’m on a travel team to keep working. I stay after school to put in extra practice to get myself better and to keep playing all the time,” Riley said. “It’s one of the most important things to me besides (my) grades.”
Bowman said she felt Riley was as an integral part of her softball team, in both skill and leadership. “She pushes others along, and tries to encourage them,” she said. “She doesn’t get upset with others on the field. I think next year she will be a very important leader on this team. This year she is trying to get her feet on the ground.”
Riley is also shaking things up as a member of the Copperas Cove High School Freshman Women’s Choir, in which she has a chance to letter based on her performance Saturday at the Solo Ensemble Contest in Temple. “If you get a certain rating of a one or two on a song with a level of three or above you get the chance to letter,” Riley said. “I picked the song ‘Seven Crudele.’ It is a three.”
As for what she wants to be when she grows up, “I haven’t really thought about it, but (maybe) a veterinarian,” she said. Riley does, however, have a few choices in mind for college, such as the University of Texas and the University of Alabama.
She also volunteers at the Food Care Center in Killeen. “We help with the food drive around Thanksgiving and help to put the baskets together,” she said. “The baskets go to families in need in the Killeen and Copperas Cove areas.”
To reach Azeita Taylor, the Copperas Cove Herald office at 254-501-7476.