Tuesday May 12 2009
Levy's legacy of diamond dominance
By: Brett Ransford, Special to The Press Tribune
Roseville pitcher's hard work makes her stand out
Although her team will not be in the playoffs this season, Roseville High senior pitcher Kiana Levy leaves behind a legacy of excellence as she moves on from the school’s softball program. Levy’s 15-10 overall record (6-5 in the SFL) does not fully tell the story of her pitching dominance. A 0.62 ERA with 169 strikeouts in 154 innings reveal much about her ability to control a game from the pitching circle. Levy walked just 24 batters and allowed only 79 hits this season. The right-hander was the starting pitcher in all but one Roseville contest this season, and in the powerful Sierra Foothill League, spent most of her time pitching in close games. She pitched a perfect game on her home field March 23 against Granite Bay and followed with a one-hitter against the Grizzlies in late April. As a junior one year ago, Levy was named SFL first team all-league and she followed that up with another stellar season. Her outstanding play hardly went unnoticed. Levy will attend Frank Phillips College in Borger, Texas on a full-ride scholarship, hoping to build on her current success with a strong performance at the 43-foot pitching distance for one or two years at the community college level. The softball team at Frank Phillips is coached by Marysville native Jenneffer Koller, who is assisted by Summer Adams, who hails from Rocklin. The pitcher spent three of her four years with the Tigers at he varsity level, and also played volleyball as a freshman and sophomore. Levy played junior varsity softball her freshman year due to injuries suffered in a car accident prior to beginning high school. Levy says she will miss her sisters of the Roseville girls’ team most. “I try to work very hard as a pitcher,” said Levy. “But part of it is my team. They’re always pushing me to be better. My perfect game wasn’t just about me. It was a big accomplishment for our whole team.” “My sisters are my best friends and my best friends are my sisters,” said Levy, whose sister Kalei was a freshman on this year’s Roseville team, “but if my dad wasn’t there I probably wouldn’t be pitching.” When she was nine, Levy’s father encouraged her to leave tap dancing for softball. One day her dad showed up after dance and took her right to her first softball practice. Every Sunday Levy goes with him to practice pitching. Her mom keeps score at her games and is the most supportive according to Levy. Both she and her mom are emotional about her leaving home for the first time for college so far away. At school Levy enjoys English courses, but plans to focus on a Business degree. She hopes one day to open a Hawaiian restaurant with her dad and enjoy the foods of her dad’s native state. Roseville coach Jennifer Birch says she knew immediately Levy was a one-of-a-kind pitcher. The first time Birch met her was at the end of Levy’s freshman year when the father-daughter combo were the only two left on campus. “They were practicing pitching in the 110-degree heat while everyone else was long gone,” Birch said. “I am not kidding when I say that every time I came to school during the summer I would look up and see [the Levy family’s] blue car.” “Kiana is the heart and soul of our team,” Birch added. “She has carried this team for two seasons, and I have enjoyed so many memories with her over the past three years. The players will remember the overall experience of their high school softball years, and Kiana is the kind of girl that makes it special for everyone.” Editor’s note: Levy was voted the April athlete of the month by Press Tribune readers.