Inside Scoop: Autumn Albers

Feb. 25, 2009

Autumn Albers is a sophomore outfielder from Danville, Calif. where she was a four-time All-East Bay Athletic League selection at San Ramon Valley High School. As a freshman last year, Autumn made 23 appearances and scored 10 Cardinal runs, including three in Pac-10 play. This season, Autumn has played in nine games and scored against Texas Tech and Kansas.

Being from the Bay Area, were you a Stanford fan growing up? Did you have a favorite Stanford softball player?

I wasn't really a fan of any college in particular during my childhood, but for some reason I always wanted to come to Stanford. The only memory I have of a player I admired is when I watched Kira Ching play on television. Kira used to do infield footwork classes with my older brother who played baseball when they were younger, so I was always excited to see her on TV! I came to one Stanford softball camp when I was about 12 with my entire club team. It's pretty hazy, but I remember running around to a lot of different that I have worked Stanford camps, I guess that is kind of what we do. Unfortunately, I was converted into a Cal fan during middle school when my older brother decided to attend Cal (booooo!). But luckily, after coming here, I have been fixed and have moved away from the dark side!

What is something that you're NOT good at?

I am really really bad at figuring out how things work. This sounds really silly and like it wouldn't be a problem, but I honestly have so much trouble figuring out how to open doors (especially car doors), trying to put together those cardboard boxes that you have to fold in certain ways (I actually failed at this once during a summer job), and getting electrical appliances connected in all of the right places. Whenever I try to open anything that has any levers or bolts (like windows or gates), I get really confused. A few weeks ago in my biology lab, I couldn't figure out how to turn the microscope on at all, and I had to get someone to help me find the little power switch on the side of it! It gets so embarassing. On a positive note, my teammate Maya Burns tried to sprint (very very quickly) out of a gate that said 'pull' by pushing it last weekend, so there is hope that I am not alone in my struggles.

Tell us about being vegan. Do you cook much for yourself? What's your favorite vegan dish? Have you managed to hook your teammates on any of your favorite foods?

I became a vegan about 5 years ago after stumbling across some research about the food industry. Prior to being vegan, I was a vegetarian for about 7 months, and I haven't eaten beef for about 7 years because I absolutely love cows! I am always sad that softball keeps me from being a true vegan because of all of the leather involved! At Stanford, I don't really cook that often because I don't have a lot of free time, but I love cooking gourmet vegan meals when I am at home. My favorite dish is probably steamed brown rice. It is soooo yummy and I eat it almost every day! Most of my teammates are still pretty skeptical about my vegan foods, but I most definitely have gotten Ashley Chinn hooked on tofurkey sausage (delish!), and about half of the team was willing to try a vegan cheesecake I made a few months ago.

Is there anything you're 'addicted to' or spend a lot of time doing?

I am addicted to jigsaw puzzles! When I was little, I used to take all of my Disney princess puzzles out, mix the pieces together, and do them upside-down. I don't do them upside down anymore, but now I have a rule where I can't look at the box. Over spring break I am planning to do a 3000 piece puzzle in my free time, and I am pumped! Most people tend to think my obsession with puzzles is a bit strange, so whenever I find someone else who shares this love with me (Sarah Hassman), I get really excited!

What did you write your Stanford admissions essay about? Is there one particular story or event that has affected who you are today?

My big Stanford essay was about this really awesome leadership seminar that I have been involved with for the past 4-5 years. It is called NCYLS (Northern California Youth Leadership Seminar), and it basically is just a really awesome weekend long conference for sophomore high school students that provides a really inspiring environment that encourages young people to instigate change in their communities. NCYLS has honestly been one of the most influential and defining experiences of my life and has introduced me to some of the best friends that I could ever ask for. I am really hoping that I will get the chance to go back this year because I never feel as happy as when I am in the NCYLS environment!

What was the best vacation you've ever taken?

My favorite vacation was going to Victoria, Canada to see my aunt and uncle. It was absolutely beautiful, and is by far one of the most amazing places I have ever visited. It is an island, so everything is by the water, and there are tons of big green trees. The weather is really nice, and there is so much to do. My favorite thing that we did there was going whale watching. Being able to spend time in such a breathtaking place with my aunt and uncle who are so special to me was really awesome, and I hope that I will be able to do it again!

How did you start playing softball? Any funny stories about playing when you were younger?

I definitely don't think anyone expected me to ever play softball when I was little. I was a huge girly girl, and loved dancing and ice skating and singing and gymnastics. I got dragged to both of my older brothers' baseball games ALL the time, and I hated it so much. One of my funniest early softball memories was during my rec league's all star game. I was playing pitcher's helper (because back then our dads pitched to us), and a pop fly got hit straight up in the air to me. I totally lost it in the sun and it came straight down and hit me in the face. It didn't really hurt because it was one of those soft incrediballs, but I was really embarassed that I dropped the ball and started crying. It was awful because all of the parents thought that I was crying because my face hurt from being hit by the ball and started offering me ice to put on it.

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