Holtz’s softball career continues in St. LouisApr 15, 2021 10:48AM ● By Greg James
Sidney Holtz is playing collegiate softball for Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo courtesy of Webster Athletics.)
By Greg James | [email protected]
A former Taylorsville resident and former Murray softball star has taken her talents to Webster University.
In her first collegiate at-bat, Sidney Holtz singled home two runners to help the Gorloks to a 5-0 victory over Nebraska Wesleyan. Later that day, she had a game-winning double to center field to drive in the winning run, a 2-1 victory for the doubleheader sweep.
“She is off to a remarkable start,” Gorloks assistant head coach Tyler Holman said.
“I think my experience has been pretty good so far,” Holtz said.
Her game-winning double came on a one-ball, two-strike count with no outs. The leadoff hitter got on with a single and reached second on a bunted fielding error. Holtz drilled the pitch off the center field fence to drive in the winning run.
“I was super nervous in my first at-bat, but as it went along, I felt like I had nothing to lose,” she said. “I got more relaxed. In my walk-off hit, I got two strikes, and I figured I needed to do something about it. I just went all in. I was super excited.”
Holtz is no stranger to the bright moments. In her junior season at Murray, she hit four home runs and drove in 33 runs.
In her junior year (2019), she was named defensive player of the year and earned first-team All-Region honors as well as honorable mention All-State.
“We expect her to continue to perform at this level,” Holman said.
She has a .250 batting average at press time. She has started four of the five games at second base. Her four runs batted in leads the team this season. She has also not committed an error in 15 chances.
Webster University is located in St. Louis, Missouri. Holtz is majoring in psychology and plans on becoming a physical therapist.
Holtz is not the only player from Utah on the Gorloks’ roster. Kaylynn Kearney from Corner Canyon and Jaelin Holdaway from Cyprus are both freshmen on this year’s roster. All three played on the same accelerated team.
Webster University competes in the St Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The SLIAC was formally chartered in 1989 and includes nine private schools from Kentucky, Illinois, Iowa and Missouri. Its members include Spalding University, Westminster (Mo.), Fontbonne, Greenville, Principia, Blackburn, Eureka and Iowa Wesleyan
In 2019, the Gorloks finished 10-24 which included a three-game winning streak at the end of the year. They play at Blackburn Park in St Louis. Katie Griffith is the Webster head coach. In 2020, they were 6-8 before the pandemic shut down the season.
Griffith is beginning her third season as the head coach. She is the fifth head coach in the team's 23-year history. She was a three-year letter winner at the University of Georgia and played in three NCAA tournaments. She later began to pitch in baseball and was the first woman to play in the California Winter League (2017), a tryout league for players hoping to gain professional experience.
“She has taught me that college is different from high school,” Holz said. “I am glad she has experienced it herself.”
The mascot at Webster University has an interesting history.
A Gorlok is a make-believe character designed by Webster students and staff. It has the paws of a cheetah, horns of a buffalo and the face of a St. Bernard dog. The name of the mascot was derived from the combination of that intersection in Webster, Gore and Lockwood. It was chosen in 1984 by a campus committee. After the name was selected a contest was run to find what students thought the creature should look like. Applicants submitted sketches as well as a description. The full-size mascot made its debut in 1988 and was created by costume designers that made “Fredbird” the St Louis Cardinals’ mascot.