EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

March 24, 2013

Around the Horn with Haverhill softball star Caitlyn McHugh

Michael Muldoon
mmuldoon@eagletribune.com

---- — With 98 career hits and 75 career runs, Caitlyn McHugh is already one of the most prolific softball players in the region in years.

Some wondered if she could continue to put up the big numbers at Haverhill High, after she transferred from Whittier just before the softball season last spring.

The big jump to the Merrimack Valley Conference slowed her little as she made Eagle-Tribune All-Star while batting an even .500 (32 for 64) for the Hillies.

Haverhill coach Andy Reusch loves having her for more than just her sweet swing.

“She’s just a delightful kid,” he said.

In this week’s Around the Horn, the 5-foot-2 senior talked about her love of hitting, her love of television and movies and her decision to transfer.

What are your goals for this season? “I really want to keep my batting average around what it was last year. I want to improve and get ready for college and win some games for my team.”

Coach Reusch said you really work on your hitting. What do you do to stay sharp? “I’ve been to a lot of clinics. A lot of working out on my own at Cedardale. I practice there all the time.”

How did you get into softball? “My dad coached me from 8-14. He played baseball for Suffolk and UMass Dartmouth.”

Any other athletes in the family? “My mother, Lori McHugh, was a gymnast. My sister, Devyn, plays varsity volleyball and softball at Governor’s Academy. She’s a sophomore.”

What’s your favorite personal athletic achievement? “Making Eagle-Tribune All-Star last year was pretty great. That was my goal my whole high school career.”

Why did you transfer from Whittier? “I really wanted to do something different with my academics. I transferred a week before softball last year. I got my coach from Whittier to sign the waiver. She was very supportive. It was the hardest thing I had to do. It was really hard to leave my coach and my team.”

How are you doing academically? “I’m taking three AP classes: European History, Art History and English.”

Do you play any other sports? “I played volleyball at Whittier. This year I did swimming. It was a big shock. I didn’t know what I was doing but it was fun. I’m glad I did it.”

Are you looking at any schools? “I’m going to Emerson. I’m real excited about playing for them. It’s in the heart of Boston. I love Boston and it’s the best around for film study. I want to work on movie sets.”

How did you get into that? “I’ve just loved movies and TV my whole life.”

Do you work? “I work at Amazement at Cedarland and in the summer I work at the Cedardale Camp.”

What’s something people don’t know about you? “I play the piano. I started when I was 13.”

What’s your dream job? “A producer for a TV show.”

Who’s your dream date? “Joseph Gordon Levitt.”

Do you have a nickname? “Cait.”

Who do you follow on Twitter-Facebook? “John Krasinski and B.J. Novak from The Office.”

Do you have any pets? “A cat named Giles we got from the MSPCA.”

Have you ever met anybody famous? “I’ve seen Mindy Kaling from The Office. I saw her walking while we were vacationing in L.A.”

What is the most embarrassing song you have in your iPod? “All the ’N Sync songs.”

If you were named principal, what’s the first thing you’d do? “That you get to go in late on MCAS days.”

CAIT’S FAVORITES

Group or singer: Kate Nash

Song: Sister by Kate Nash

Book: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Website: Netflix

App: IMDB

Actor-actress: Tina Fey

Movie: The Social Network

TV show: Parks and Recreation

Athlete: Jennie Finch

Food: Chicken Fingers

Car: Mine, a 2000 Honda Civic

Restaurant: Krueger’s, my friend works there

Teacher: Mrs. (Carol) Quinney for AP English