After years on the soccer pitch, Noelle Mourani’s friend and neighbor insisted she take her athletic skills to the softball diamond.
“She played softball, and she encouraged me to try a different sport since I’d been playing soccer for so long,” says Mourani of her friend. “So I decided to go into softball, and I really enjoy it.”
The Cornelia Connelly High School sophomore plays shortstop for the Koalas and looks forward to non-stop action and challenge of the position.
“I do enjoy it because shortstop is involved in most of the plays on the field,” says Mourani. “It’s really complicated, and there’s a lot I need to know. I enjoy the challenge of being in every play.”
A self-described lover of sports, Mourani’s competitive spirit, along with the way she continually challenges herself, has helped build her confidence as an athlete. And to be able to represent her high school while competing means just as much to the 15-year-old.
“I’m proud to have that Connelly name on my uniform,” says Mourani. “This school represents the values I value as a person and my morals and what I want to do with my life.”
Even though she started last season sidelined with an injury, Mourani was present for every practice, supporting her teammates. She finished the season strong, leading her team with hits and earning First Team All-CIF honors as a freshman.
“As a coach, I appreciate Noelle’s dedication, and her teammates love her support,” says Connelly head softball coach, Jason Manley. “One of my favorite qualities about Noelle is her desire for perfection. She does a lot of things very well, but she’s always aware of how she could improve.”
Mourani plays soccer for Connelly as well, and the natural multi-sport athlete uses the stamina and speed she gains from soccer to help her each spring in softball. Being a part of a team serves as a constant reminder for Mourani that individual play should often take a back seat to the needs of the team.
“It’s not just about me,” says Mourani. “It’s about everyone else.”
Away from athletics, you can find the Huntington Beach resident still competing on the academic side of things through the school’s Academic Decathlon team. She’s looking to pursue engineering in college, and plans to keep playing sports in a way that helps keep her interests balanced.
When it comes to motivation and inspiration, Mourani’s faith and family are at the top of the list. And it’s specifically her father whom she thanks for instilling many life lessons.
“He’s the one who encouraged me not only in the skill…but also in showing hard work and showing how to lead your team, and showing how to be a good player,” says Mourani of her dad. “It’s always about being there for your team and working hard.”