Officially a Scot

Fraser to continue softball career at Alma College

News Photo by Jonny Zawacki Emma Fraser (middle, seated) is joined by family and coaches as she signs her National Letter of Intent to continue her academic and athletic career. Fraser will attend Alma College and play softball for the Scots.

When Emma Fraser’s Alpena High School playing days are over, two things are guaranteed to happen.

First, Fraser will have left her mark at Alpena, going down as one of the best softball players to go through the storied program.

Second,Fraser will be ready to continue her playing career at the collegiate level, because on Monday, Fraser officially signed her National Letter of Intent to continue her academic and athletic career at Alma College, where she will play softball next spring for the Scots.

Fraser’s road to Alma was a wild one as the Wildcat senior had previously been verbally committed to a Division II school in West Virginia and had been receiving offers from other softball schools in Michigan, including Ferris State, but Fraser eventually chose Alma.

“It felt amazing to finally sign. I’ve been waiting a long time because I had been committed to another school, but changed my mind so I had to wait quite a while, but now that the time is finally here, it feels great to finally be official and I can calm down and I’m excited to go to Alma,” Fraser said. “I like how Alma is a small school. I had the option to go to a bigger school, but I chose a Division III school so I can have a social life, I can really work on my academics because that is the most important thing to me and the smaller class size will help me learn better.”

Fraser is going into the IPHS pre-med program at Alma with the goals of being a dermatologist.

The transition to Alma should be easy for Fraser, who has been a part of a winning culture for Alpena.

Fraser is a four-year varsity player for the Wildcats and will join an Alma softball program that has a rich tradition of its own.

“The transition is going to be pretty cool. I feel like it will be kind of the same atmosphere with great coaches and great girls that are ready to play,” Fraser said. “Competition wise, I’m ready to the next level. I’ve always enjoyed challenging myself and I’m excited to see what our teams at Alma can do.”

Head coach Denny Griffin has built a successful program during his 30-year career as the Scots have won Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) championships two of the last three years and have eclipsed the 30-win total twice in the last four years.

“Coach Griffin and coach (Phil) Hansen have been great and have supported me. Coach Griffin has a great background and has has some good teams in the past years. Both have helped me a lot with the financial part of attending college and they’re really excited for me to come,” Fraser said. “I had a few other offers, but I chose my academic over athletic, because in the end I’m not going to be playing softball for the rest of my life, I’m going to be headed into the career I want to go into so that was more important to me. They have a really good academic reputation and offer the degree I’m pursuing and I feel like it was the best fit for me and my education.”

Fraser has already put together a storied career wearing Alpena’s green and white, but still has her senior year to put the finishing touches on what will be a record-setting career.

Fraser currently holds single-season school records for hits (74), runs (57), doubles (22) and batting average (.540), all set during a stellar junior season in which she was selected first team all-Big North Conference as an infielder and earned first team all-state honors as a third baseman.

During her sophomore year, Fraser was first team all-conference and first team all-district as a pitcher.

“Emma is a pleasure to coach. Year round, she works tremendously hard on enhancing her softball skills and her efforts show on the diamond,” Alpena softball coach Paul Marwede said. “Emma holds several offensive records and has her senior year ahead of her to add to her individual accomplishments. I know Emma is excited about her senior year and her upcoming college career at Alma College.”

With her senior season right around the corner, Fraser has her eyes set on a handful of noteworthy career records.

Fraser’s 152 career hits are just 11 shy of breaking Christin Sobeck’s career mark of 162 from 1999-2001. Fraser has scored 122 runs in her career and is on the verge of breaking Lisa Preuss’s career record of 125 runs set during 2002-2004 and Fraser has 99 career RBI and is within striking distance of Rachel Boyk’s record of 122 career RBI set during 2001-2004.

Fraser has a career batting average of .436, has hit nine home runs and has played 669 innings for the Wildcats. She also carries a record of 21-9 in the circle.

Fraser is everything you could ask out of a player that bats at the top of the order. Fraser’s ability to hit for contact and power from the left side has given Alpena a perfect table setter the past three years and both Fraser and the Wildcats are looking forward to a big senior season.

“I have a lot of goals set for this upcoming season and I just want to be known when I leave,” Fraser said. “I’m not just going to Alma to play softball, I’m going there to break records. I know it’s Division III and I can compete at a higher level so I’m going to set some pretty high goals for myself.”