After claiming a 14-1 record and 2.22 earned run average in the 2021 season, softball alumna Faith Weber is returning to the diamond as a graduate assistant coach.
As an undergraduate utility player, Weber accumulated a 3.64 ERA through her five years at GW while earning a .295 batting average. Weber gained a plethora of honors during her time as a Colonial including the Academic All-American award, the CoSIDA Academic All-District 2 first team and all-conference and all-region honors before graduating.
Weber hit the diamond as a coach in December and has since taken a leadership role with her past teammates.
“I think that my favorite part about the job is just to be around the people,” Weber said. “So the dynamics, the relationships just supporting the players that we have on the field. I think that’s a pretty big role that I have, which is to be there in support of everything they’re able to accomplish.”
Weber, who built up a 14-1 record and struck out 98 batters on the mound during the 2021 season, was an integral member of the team, winning the GW Athletics Red Auerbach Award for all-around excellence during her last year.
Weber, despite her recent position on staff, is one of the most experienced on the team following recent coaching turnover. Head Coach Chrissy Schoonmaker gained the title in 2021 following the departure of ex-Head Coach Shane Winkler and his team in 2021.
Weber said she was grateful for her opportunity to be able to come back as a graduate assistant after the pandemic put a pause to one of her eligibility years. She said working with the new staff has allowed her to build new relationships with the new coaches and players to help the team grow.
She said her favorite part of coaching is preparing the pitchers before each match and figuring out the best way to support the team as an assistant coach. Weber said she has been working to better understand what happens behind the scenes and the details needed to become a better coach.
“I guess our team just does a really good job of playing their heart out when they’re out there,” Weber said. “And I think that just to compete is like the number one thing that I’m proud of them for doing. It’s not really a change, but just something that you see more as a coach, like from an outsider’s perspective and you’re not in the game.”
Weber said she will continue supporting the team throughout the season by getting the field ready for the team and giving them the necessary tools to be successful. She said she hopes to continue growing as a coach and supporting the team as best as she can.
“I played with a lot of them and there’s a few new kids,” Weber said. “It’s cool to just continue to build those relationships on the field and also off the field just to be around.”
Schoonmaker said Weber hit the ground running in her new position as a jack of all trades, since she has been helping the coaching staff on the road. She said Weber has also been helping the team practice their arm circles and base plays to strengthen their offense.
“There’s a lot of things that go into coaching that are not just Xs and Os on the field, but she does a great job with that,” Schoonmaker said. “She’s helping us relay some signals. She’s committed and whatever we ask her to do, Faith is bought in.”
Schoonmaker said Weber’s experience as a recent graduate allows her to understand the demands the team may be battling or looking to balance their life as student athletes.
“She was an outstanding GW player and she’s gonna be an outstanding coach if that’s the route she decides to pursue,” Schoonmaker said.
Graduate student utility player Sierra Lange, who played with Weber for four years, said Weber is source of a positive leadership for the team, keeping the team energy and motivation high throughout games.
“Having her in the dugout still and being around us, having her as a teammate has always been a joy,” Lange said. “Having her also be our coach is just another plus for us.”