HPU Outfielder Wrapping Up College Career In Fine Style
Toni Baysa’s breakthrough season on the softball field came early.
“My greatest memory from childhood was during my Bobby Sox (youth softball) days, when I was 9 and made the All-Star team,” she recalled.
“My dad (Anthony) was coaching me then. I’d never made the All-Star team before that year, and when they called my name, I was so happy. We got to travel to California, and it was great.”
Baysa’s career in softball has been on an upward path ever since. At Mililani High School she was a two-time All-Conference player under coach Rose Antonio in 2011 and 2012. Now a senior outfielder for Hawaii Pacific University, Baysa is looking for the right ending to her college career. She is off to a good start in 2015, having batted .364 to date, with four RBI and a fielding percentage of 100 percent.
Baysa recently took some time away from practice and the classroom to visit with MidWeek‘s Central Oahu Islander.
Who has had the biggest impact on your life? My dad, definitely. Just talking about him I’m going to cry. He’s really supportive. He’ll do whatever he can to sacrifice for our family. He works 16-hour days just to give us the best chance (at succeeding).
What was the biggest adjustment in moving from prep softball to the college level? Definitely the workouts in the fall, which is like our off-season. We have to make sure we’re in top shape, so we’re always running, lifting and conditioning. My freshman year was intense. I thought high school conditioning had been hard.
What is your favorite road destination in the PacWest Conference? I like when we go to play Cal-Baptist and Azusa Pacific. They have beautiful fields, especially Cal-Baptist. It’s immaculate.
When you surf the Internet, what website do you go to the most? It will sound a little nerdy, but I’m always on Blackboard for school. I have three online classes this semester. I also go on Google a lot.
What film could you watch over and over? A Walk to Remember.
Who are three of your favorite musical artists? I like Drake, I love Beyonce, and I also like Taylor Swift.
When you have free time, how do you like to spend it? At the beach. I like Sandy’s, and Keiki’s on the North Shore. If I have my niece (Hayden), I like to go to Lanikai.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years? I’m hoping I’m a nurse already.
What is your least favorite household chore? Cleaning the bathroom. I can’t do it. I leave it to my sisters.
If you were planning a trip, what would be your dream destination? I’d actually like to travel the world. If I had to pick one, I would go to New York for Christmas. I played in the snow in Colorado once — I was 3 or 4 — and got frostbite.
You’re stuck on Kaho‘olawe and can have just one food. What would it be? I eat everything. I can’t pick. I don’t want to sound basic, but I love my chocolate. I love to have chocolate in my life.
Given the chance, what celebrity would you most like to meet? I’ll have to go with Beyonce again. She’s great.