Inside Scoop: Erikka Moreno

March 18, 2009

Erikka Moreno, a sophomore from Villa Park, Calif., is in her second season as a reserve infielder for the Cardinal. As a freshman last year, Erikka appeared in 10 games as a pinch hitter and first baseman and hit .200 in 10 at-bats. This season, she has pinch hit on four occasions. On Friday, Erikka and her older sister Brianna, a senior outfielder for Princeton, will face off for the second time in their careers.

Tell us about your sister. Do you guys get along? What was it like playing against her last year?

My sister Brianna and I are 21 months apart, and we definitely did our fair share of bickering growing up, especially since we played on the same club and high school team for a period of time. We're both very competitive people, so there was always competition. I remember we even had to come up with a system for the front seat of the car because we always fought over that. We worked it out pretty well: I was born on an even day and she was born on an odd day, so I got it on even days and her on odd days. (Of course, it was never truly fair if the month ended in 31 days.) In the end it's always worked out. I remember one high school softball practice where our coach had to sit the team down and have a team talk about how sisters on the same team have a special relationship and 'are allowed to say things to others that other teammates can't'. That particular year we had both my sister and I along with a set of twins on the team, so there was a good amount of sibling rivalry. Playing against Princeton (where my sister is an outfielder) was definitely one of my highlights from last year. Looking up in the stands I could see my parents, grandparents, and other extended family, wearing a pretty evenly balanced display of both Princeton and Stanford apparel and perched smack dab in the middle of the stands. Late in the game Bri slapped a ball to the left side, and I received the ball at first base in what I will admit was a VERY close play (she was out). We have a picture of Bri reaching first base just as I caught the ball. It's one of my favorite pictures of all time.

Tell us about the job you've had the last two summers.

Over the past two summers, I've had the opportunity to work at an oral surgeon's office back home. My old travel ball coach in as oral surgeon, and offered me a job in his office the summer after my senior year. The first summer I actually worked with teammate Rosey Neill! This has definitely been an amazing experience for me. While I'm still not sure exactly where I'm going with my career, I have always loved medicine, and the opportunity to experience it in such a hands-on environment was invaluable. I would say the most entertaining part of the job involved patients recovering from general anesthesia, as some wake up very 'happy'. It's always a good day at work when you are proposed to by a 60-year old man coming out of anesthesia.

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

My name is Erikka, and I am a Fro-Yo addict. Ask anybody who knows me and they will tell you I am hopelessly hooked. From Golden Spoon to Yogurtland, Pinkberry and Palo Alto's own Red Mango, I can't get enough of it! In San Diego a couple weekends ago, we were treated to Golden Spoon in honor of Alissa Haber's 21st birthday. YUMMM!

Describe something that you're NOT good at.

Last year during a game delay at a home tournament, we played this game called 'Signs'. In this game, each person has their own sign, and through a combination of clapping and rhythm you first give your sign, then `pass' it to somebody by giving their sign. I just couldn't do it! The team even tried to help by making my sign as simple as a clap but that didn't even help. I am sad to say I am definitely rhythm-challenged...but happy to say it provided a good pregame laugh for Stanny Softball!

Describe your hometown. If you were to take someone on a tour of the area, where would you go?

My hometown is Villa Park, the smallest city in population in Orange County with only 6,000 residents. I have lived in the same house since I was 2 and I love it. Villa Park is known for its absence of sidewalks and streetlights giving it a rural feel. We have only one corner in the entire city with businesses, and that's pretty much the hangout for everyone. Bagel Me and Coffee Grove are my favorite spots there and my 'city tour' would stop at both places...after of course, some nearby fro-yo! A visit to SoCal wouldn't be complete without seeing our gorgeous beaches or taking in an Angel game from their home stadium about 5 minutes away!

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

One of my shorter Stanford admissions essays asked about something I was interested in pursuing at Stanford, and I wrote about my great-granny's battle with Multiple Sclerosis and the potential of stem-cell research in providing a cure. MS has always been a topic close to my heart, as I watched my granny deal with it my entire life. She knew I was interested in medicine and would always call me, 'my granddaughter-the-doctor'. She died two years ago, but not before motivating me to make a difference with my life. After coming to Stanford, I'm not sure that pursuing stem-cell research is the way to do that but my great-grandma has motivated me to find something I am passionate in and pursue it whole-heartedly.

You mentioned you've been to Italy and Ireland. What were the occasions for those trips?

Most people don't know how much I love to travel. I love everything about it: flying, meeting new people, trying new food (for the most part), and just experiencing a new way of life. My parents work for American Airlines, so I have been very fortunate in being able to travel a lot throughout my childhood. Unfortunately, I lose these benefits when I graduate from college, so my sister and I have been trying to take advantage of traveling while we can. Our motto is: travel far and travel often! Two recent trips were to Rome and Ireland. Rome was really humbling. There was so much history and culture (and the gelato was amazing!). I am actually taking a class called Gender and Power in Ancient Rome, and it's awesome to hear the professor discuss places I have actually visited! Over Christmas break, my sister and I went to Ireland and spent New Years Eve in Dublin.

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