MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Huntingdon senior Brooke Meadows will represent her college and her country this month with the USA Athletes International softball team.
The USAAI team will travel to Aruba to participate in the Aruba Friendship Series on June 7-14.
"It's a once in a lifetime opportunity," said Meadows, a native of Tallassee, Alabama. "When I first found out about this, it just seemed like a chance to take a trip and play softball. But as it gets closer and I've learned more about it, I'm really excited.
"In addition to playing, we're also scheduled to take tours and do things like go on a safari and go scuba diving. It is an unbelievable opportunity."
Meadows is coming off a dominant senior season in which she helped lead the Lady Hawks to the USA South Athletic Conference Tournament finals and was named Huntingdon's Female Athlete of the Year. She finished the season with a 14-6 record, 0.76 ERA and 164 strikeouts in 128 1/3 innings. In two seasons with Huntingdon, she was 22-11 with 275 strikeouts and a 1.56 ERA.
She is one of just more than a dozen college players selected for this trip. The USAAI team will play at least five games during the week.
"We're going to meet each other for the first time when we arrive," Meadows said. "Most of the players on our team are from up North or out West. I've never had the opportunity to play with so many players from other parts of the country, or to compete against players from another country. I'm interested to see what that will be like."
According to the USAAI website and Facebook page, USAAI is a "non-profit organization dedicated to giving amateur athletes and coaches the opportunity to participate in International Olympic style sporting events throughout the world, while also allowing them to broaden their educational and cultural knowledge of the world through the experience."
USAAI began international competition in 1992 as the Midwest All-Stars. After initially offering only baseball, the organization began offering additional sports and currently sponsors 15 sports with competitions in 25 countries.