Athlete Spotlight: Francesca Testa, softball, Montclair High School
PHOTO BY ANDREW GARDA/STAFF
by Andrew Garda
Montclair High School junior Francesca Testa has had a great softball season so far. Through seven games, she has amassed 10 hits, including two triples, three doubles and a pair of home runs, as well as 10 runs batted in.
She also has a rocket for an arm and will mow down a baserunner at first even from deep at shortstop.
Asked how she managed to build the strength to get a runner out from anywhere on the field, Testa shrugs.
“I have three brothers and I try to play catch with them as often as I can and I use that a lot,” she said.
When you watch Testa on the diamond, she constantly impresses, but if you ask her how she did during the Mounties 10-9 win over Hoboken on a chilly Tuesday afternoon, she’s more likely to dwell on the strikeout she had in the sixth inning than the triple she bit for in the second inning.
“However I play I think I can do better than that,” she said just before the game against the Redwings. “So, that’s just my little motivation and helps me get through. I try to improve with every single game.”
Testa was nice enough to take a few minutes before the game against Hoboken to let us get to know her a little better.
Have you started looking at colleges?
It’s always been my dream to play in college. I play in the summer, and we’re going to go to a few clinics and showcases and see what happens.
How do you lead on a team with so many young players?
A lot of the other upperclassmen and I like to pat them along. We have to be there for the good and the bad, that’s what being a good teammate is. When they strike out tell them “you’ll get ‘em next time” and when they get a hit it’s “way to be kid!” We don’t get down on anyone, we just keep plowing through.
What’s your favorite subject?
I’ve always been a math and science kid, so I guess I would say math.
Are you leaning that way for college?
I’m going to try and major in forensic psychology or just psychology, if that’s where it takes me. Connecting criminology to psychology. I have a few members of law enforcement in my family, and my mom has a lot of friends who are with the FBI. Obviously the tremendous amount of TV shows, not that it’s like that in real life. I’vew just always been interested in that. What drives certain people to act certain ways.
What are the team goals this year?
Last year we got to the state tournament, which was something new for us. We got eliminated the first game. Obviously we’re going to take every game at a time and try to win those, especially the ones in our conference. But just try to get in the tournaments and see how far we can advance.