Varsity softball athlete commits to Dartmouth, prepares for junior-year season

Elizabeth “EB” Bobbitt looks forward to the future

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Neena Sidhu

As she follows through with her swing, Elizabeth Bobbitt “EB” hits the ball into the outfield. Bobbitt officially committed to Dartmouth to play softball. “With any team I’ve been on, you have to learn to communicate,” Bobbitt said. “And you have to learn how to play with others.”

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In a nail-biting game, nearing the end of the final inning, Elizabeth “EB” Bobbitt steps up to bat. Knowing fans, coaches and scouts could be watching her at this moment, Bobbitt gets into position and takes a swing, now running the bases. She succeeds.

Bobbitt plans to continue running her softball career to the college level at Dartmouth College, but first she will play her first game of the season alongside her team Tuesday, March 7, against Denton Guyer at Denton Guyer High School.

“My goals going to Dartmouth are balancing academics and sports since it’s a very academic school,” Bobbitt said. “I also hope to take a leadership role there.”

Bobbitt started playing softball at 12 years old, and she has played her past three years on Prosper’s varsity team. With her team in the field, fans have spotted her at third base, center field, shortstop and left field.

“EB has always had a prominent and competitive presence on the field,” head coach Allison Baird said. “This year has been really great to be a small part of her journey to see her grow as a leader and as a person.”

Along with playing for Prosper, Bobbitt plays for the Athletics Mercado- NTX Frausto club team.

“Club softball is way more competitive than high school, and the level of play is much faster,” teammate Jeslyn Burghardt said. “Going to college is like joining a new club team.”

Standing behind the baseline, Elizabeth Bobbitt cheers on her team after a successful play. This year is Bobbitt’s third year on Prosper’s varsity team, and she plays for the Athletics Mercado-NTX Frausto club team. (Neena Sidhu)

Bobbitt is a junior this year but had already received multiple Division I offers before making her commitment to Dartmouth.

“The recruitment process is different for everybody,” Bobbitt said. “It depends on how much you put yourself out there with camps and being on the right team that goes to certain tournaments.”

By posting highlight videos to get her name out and putting in the work, Bobbitt earned the position she is in now.

“There’s so much that goes into committing to play in college, and it takes a lot of sacrifice from the athletes and their parents,” Baird said. “As coaches, we preach that hard work will pay off, so when it does pay off with a college opportunity, it’s another life lesson learned through sports that is tremendously valuable to the athlete and to their peers.”

Moving into spring, Prosper’s team is preparing to start the season with a new coach.

“We’ve had a coach change this past year,” Bobbitt said. “So, we’ve all had to get to know her and she has to gotten to know us.”

Elizabeth is a great friend and teammate. She is loud, encouraging, and a great ball player. I’m glad to be playing with her.”

— Jeslyn Burghardt, teammate

Baird coached softball for 10 years, but this year will be her first with Prosper High School.

“I’m looking forward to watching this group of young women grow in the game of softball and in their own lives,” Baird said. “Being a coach is a really special thing because I get to watch these young women grow during some of the most crucial parts of their lives, and watching that development happen is always really rewarding.”

Focused on the ball above her, Bobbitt runs to catch the ball in the outfield. Beyond softball, Bobbitt is interested in music, painting, and writing. (Neena Sidhu)

The 2023 season does raise concerns for Bobbitt and Burghardt as the team faces changes.

“We lost five D1 seniors last year who were the top of our lineup and played the field,” Bobbitt said. “So, losing that was actually very hard.”

The girls had high hopes of going to state near the end of their 2022 season, but their road to get there was cut short.

“Last year, it was a shock losing in the first round of the playoffs,” Burghardt said. “We were thinking a bit too far into the future.”

Despite the struggles the team has dealt with in the last year, Bobbitt and her team continue to have positive mindsets about a fresh start moving forward.

“You have to learn things on the fly, and you learn that mistakes are okay, and failures are okay,” Bobbitt said. “My teammates keep me motivated, while having fun and being competitive.”

All throughout high school, sports have played a role in Bobbitt’s life, as she played basketball in addition to softball as a freshman and sophomore.

“Being on the softball team teaches you that as long as you keep trying and don’t give up, you’ll get better every day,” Burghardt said. “There are many things you can take out into the real world that softball teaches you.”

With over four years of softball experience – and more to come, Bobbitt looks forward to improving as a whole team this year.

“People might think softball is just a random game,” Bobbitt said. “But it’s very mental.”

In addition to athletics, Bobbitt said she values friendship, motivation, and hard work in her everyday life.

“Elizabeth is a great friend and teammate,” Burghardt said. “She is loud, encouraging, and a great ball player. I’m glad to be playing with her.”