By Caroline Womble
William Peace University softball has a new face for the team. Coach Bethany Wells graduated from NC State in 2012 and has started at WPU to enhance the team further. Wells played on the Division I NCSU softball team and holds the third most home runs in her alma mater’s history.
Transitioning from being a player in Division I to being a coach in Division III has been an adjustment.
“As a player, I knew what I had to do as a teammate to get my other teammates motivated,” said Wells.
“As a coach it’s a different relationship. I am still trying to figure the best way to communicate what I want to my players.”
Division I sports is a much more intense level. Student athletes are paid so coaches can expect the players to treat it as a job. The schedule is incredibly rigorous with the players juggling daily workouts, practice, class. However, in Division III, there are rules that put restrictions on how much the team can practice and they can’t practice for more than three and half hours a day.
This was a huge change for Wells.
“I came into this thinking that I would be a full time coach with the team for most of the day but I only get to spend three and half hours a day with my players.”
When asked was this a positive or a negative Wells said, “It’s another difference between a coach and player. As a player I would have loved to only have certain amount of time a week we had to practice. As a coach it puts restrictions on what I can do so I don’t like it at all.”
Wells would love to go back to her playing days but she says that she has enjoyed coaching and it has brought a new perspective on the game she loves.