SEATTLE – Two-time USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year and ace starting pitcher on the 2009 National Championship team, Danielle (Lawrie) Locke will further solidify her place in Washington history, when her jersey is retired at the Huskies’ Sept. 28 football game against Arizona at Husky Stadium.
“For it to happen so quickly was surreal,” Locke said of the honor. “It’s a really amazing thing. I’m just blown away with it still…And it’s not just an accomplishment for me. It’s so much of what our team and the success that we had.”
Locke will be the first Washington softball player to have her jersey retired. Locke is the Huskies all-time leader in numerous categories, including wins, complete games, shutouts, and strikeouts. Her six no-hitters are the most among any individual Washington pitcher.
But perhaps her most proud accomplishment is being apart of the 2009 team that won the Women’s College World Series. Locke redshirted the 2008 season to compete for the Canadian national team in the Beijing Summer Olympics, but came back to the UW on a mission.
“There’s so many ups and so many downs that signify everything of being so amazing,” Lawrie said. “There were so many struggles to get us to where we were. You think of the 6 a.m. weights and you think of doing that with all your teammates and your friends. You think about the weekends that you have off and you get to hang out and just bond with your friends. You think about the postseason when you’re all sitting in the room and you see where you’re going… Mentally I would say I just grew so much stronger as a person throughout the whole five years.”
She finished the 2009 season 42-8 with a 0.97 ERA and 521 strikeouts in 352.2 innings, leading the Huskies softball team to their first national championship and winning her first of two USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year awards in the process.
“You build so many friendships around Seattle and in the community playing here, but the number one was that 2009 team and the relationships you built with them and what we overcome and what we accomplished.”
In addition to Lawrie, the UW athletic department will also honor 2006 NCAA Baseball First Team All-American Tim Lincecum, 2006 NCAA Volleyball First Team All-American Courtney Thompson, and 2010 Ben Hogan award winner Nick Taylor by retiring their jerseys.
There will also be a ceremony to commemorate Lawrie’s jersey retirement at a softball game in April. Danielle and husband Drew Locke are expecting their first child in December. Locke said she is planning to return to play for the USSSA Pride of the National Pro Fastpitch league next summer.