Horvath adds spark to potent Laker lineup
Junior right fielder Chelsea Horvath is hitting .381, slugging .571, leading the Grand Valley State softball team in on-base percentage at .466 – and normally bats ninth.
“It seems to be a comfort spot for her,” said first-year head coach Dana Callihan. “She seems to be the most successful where she is in the lineup, and sometimes if someone is happy where they’re at, you leave them there and they get the job done.”
GVSU is 11-3 this season with Horvath as the number nine hitter. Depth is a strong suit for the high-powered Lakers, who lead the GLIAC in runs, doubles, RBIs and walks.
Callihan can’t say enough about the East Kentwood High School product.
“She gets along great with everybody,” Callihan said. “We like to have a few laughs here and there, but when we are on the field, we’re ready to play. Off the field, it can be pretty entertaining.”
Horvath first got into softball when she was about 3 or 4, playing tee ball and coach pitch. She said she chose to attend GVSU for the campus and athletic program, saying GVSU’s history and coaching staff played a part, too.
She plays with a lot of intensity on the field, but she said when it comes to her motivation, it comes from her dad.
“In all honesty, I lost my dad about three years ago, so every game is pretty much for him, also my teammates, my coaches and the school that I play for,” she said.
Horvath has been a big part of the Lakers 23-7 start this season. She said the team is heading in the right direction.
“I’m so proud of them,” she said. “Our freshman came in this year ready to work and everyone’s mentality is just to win.”
She also credits Callihan for the team’s success so far this season, saying she is all about the details, which Horvath likes and thinks is a good thing.
“I just want Chelsea to stay focused on what she’s doing and keep getting better, that’s our goal for everybody is to get better every single day and Chelsea is confident right now at the plate,” Callihan said. “I think that’s a big key. She’s done a nice job at the plate, she’s had some key hits for us at key times and she keeps our rallies going and that’s kind of the role she’s been playing.”
Callihan also likes Horvath’s competitiveness and grit, saying she is determined and always wants to play, wants to be in the game and will fight her way into the lineup all the time.
As a recruit, Callihan said Horvath’s speed really stood out.
That speed is showing this season, as Horvath’s pair of triples rank as the fifth-most in the conference. She also has seven multiple-hit games already and six multiple-RBI games, two of which were three-RBI games. She’s scored 10 runs to go with five doubles, one home run and 18 RBIs.
Horvath and the red-hot Lakers, currently riding a five-game win streak in which they’ve scored 53 runs, will be off until Saturday when they take on Ohio Dominican at 1 and 3 p.m. at the GVSU Softball Field. The Lakers also welcome Tiffin on Sunday at noon and 2 p.m.