Hitting the Ball to the Moon: Lauren Chamberlain

She crushed more home runs in Division I college softball history, and left an NCAA Women’s College World Series champion.

Lauren Chamberlain is as competitive as they come, staying cool in the biggest moments, always calculating how she can adjust to help lift her team over the top.

Find out how Chamberlain’s Rocket athlete mindset is helping her transition from college stardom to professional success, and how it’s shown up in competition time and time again.

A rocket is defined as
a cylindrical projectile that can be propelled to a great height or distance by the combustion of its contents.

This Rocket however, is the one sending projectiles hurtling towards the sky with combustion-like power and determination.

Lauren Chamberlain broke the NCAA record for career home runs in 2015, blasting her 91st career homer.

The homerun record was one that had stood for nearly twenty years, and for Chamberlain, in record breaking moment, hadn’t even noticed it was the hit that would push her past former UCLA slugger and USA softball legend Stacey Nuveman. 

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“I hadn’t even thought about it at that point, because we were down and I was just trying to get us back in the ball game,” Chamberlain said, “I was trying to make an adjustment from my earlier at bats.” 

There are two key traits of the Rocket that Chamberlain displayed in this situation:

  1. Rockets have the ability to rebound from a mistake fairly quickly– she took the poor performances she had at the plate early on in the game and adjusted, resulting in her cranking a grand slam that put her team ahead.
  2. Rockets get things done– Not focused on her potential record breaking effort, Chamberlain focused on how she could help her team and did just that, changing the course of the game on one crack of the bat.

A winner of the Jennie Finch award in 2016, Chamberlain is recognized in her sport as a player who exemplifies leadership and humility on and off the field.

The woman whose record she broke, Stacey Nuveman, had this to say about Chamberlain’s accomplishments in an interview with ESPNW, “As a fan of the game and as someone that just loves the sport and what it gives and what it brings, she’s worthy of all the praise and the accolades.

Chamberlain is a champion for her sport and a shining example of a Rocket in softball. Always calm, cool, and collected she has even proven able to deliver in the clutch, much like fellow Rockets Tom Brady and Buster Posey.

For example, in game one of the 2013 Women’s College World Series against Tennessee, Chamberlain capped off a comeback victory in extra innings for her Oklahoma squad with this walk off home run:

As a Rocket, Chamberlain is an athlete unafraid of the spotlight in the big moments. Someone comfortable being the center of attention, a mental skill set that has suited her well as a number one overall pick in the NPF Draft in 2015.

Always comfortable with herself and letting her extroverted personality show — whether the response is positive or negative — Chamberlain is a model of how to turn success on softball’s most visible platform, the college game, into lasting resonance in a post-college world,” mentions Graham Hayes in an ESPNW feature he wrote about Chamberlain in 2017.

As a young and marketable star in the professional softball world, Chamberlain has been comfortable stepping into the spotlight, engaging with fans, and being a pillar many young girls in the sport look to for inspiration, something Rockets do very well, and often take pride in.

Now locked in with her professional team, the USSSA Pride for a couple more seasons, it will be intriguing to see how Chamberlain continues to grow as a player, a Rocket, and of course, as a person.