Last spring, Devyn Cretz had a decision to make.
It was her third year playing softball at the University of Texas in El Paso. She had redshirted her freshman year, finally worked her way into the rotation and was consequently seeing some quality minutes on the diamond. She had close relationships with her teammates. The coaching staff was adequate. However, Cretz noticed something as time waned throughout her sophomore year at UTEP. She wasn’t necessarily feeling as valued to her current team as she hoped she would.
Because of this, Cretz had a choice to make. She could either stay at UTEP and ride it out for the rest of her college career or look at other schools that were interested in her skillset. Fast forward a year later to now, Cretz is grateful she chose the latter and decided to ultimately transfer to Utah Valley University.
“I feel like I mean more to this team,” said Cretz. “I’m more valued and I’m just really glad I’m here.”
Although many things have changed for Cretz over the last nine months since moving from El Paso to Orem, such as the weather and the number of students on campus, one thing that hasn’t changed is how close she is with her teammates.
“On the field, we are always in it together. I want to play for them and do well for them. If I make an error, they always make sure to tell me that they have my back and that we are in it together. I feel at ease knowing they are going to help me.”
However, her current teammates aren’t the only ones who have made Cretz feel at home throughout her time as a Wolverine. Perhaps the individual who has had the biggest impact on Cretz at UVU, while also the one who had the most influence to get her in the green and white, is head coach and reigning WAC Coach of the Year TJ Hubbard. The culture Coach Hubbard has built over the last three years was something Cretz wanted to be a part of.
“He always knows what to say at the right time,” said Cretz. “He is so calm about things and is very approachable. He is one of the best coaches I’ve ever had and I really cherish him as a coach.”
In her inaugural season at UVU, Cretz has pitched a total of 120 innings with nine victories under her belt. She doesn’t plan on this being her last year at Utah Valley University, either. The junior pitcher looks forward to the opportunity she will have to continue to have a positive influence and to finish her college softball career at Utah Valley.
“That’s one of the reasons why I transferred because I wanted to finish at a place where I could make an impact,” said Cretz. “I’m so fortunate that I found a school that I love. I’m always happy to go to games and I’m always happy to go to practice. It’s like a re-do for me.”
Photo courtesy of UVU Athletics