Liberty's Wolff a sensation on, off field

CARROLL SPORTS

May 19, 1993|By BILL FREE

Amy Wolff wore a Liberty uniform for the final time Monday.

Three-sport athletes with natural gifts and instincts like Wolff's just don't come along often. Wolff was a pleasure to watch, whether she was playing softball, basketball or soccer.

But it was softball that set Wolff apart from everybody else in her four-year athletic career at Liberty. Especially when she got on first base.

When Wolff took a lead from first, she was Rickey Henderson and Pete Rose wrapped up in one. This girl was born to run the bases.

She had an innate ability to know when to steal second and when to rush back to the bag. That gift made her one of the most relaxed and confident base runners at the high school level.

"If the coach tells me I have to go, it seems like I get out. If I steal when I think I can make it, I usually do. It's just a feeling I have," Wolff said.

Softball just won't be the same in the county next year without Wolff's nail-biting gambles on the bases.

But there was more to Wolff the softball player.

She could cover center field with ease, make diving catches and throw runners out. The senior star was also the No. 3 hitter in the lineup and led the county in hitting with a .561 average as a junior.

Wolff was a big-time player in high school and now faces the challenge of proving she can play at the Division I level in college.

The Liberty standout decided last week that she will attend UMBC on a softball scholarship.

Retrievers softball coach Joy Figuero believes Wolff has the size and bat speed to be the team's starting center fielder next season.

"It should be fun," said Wolff of her decision to play softball at UMBC. "I like the players on the team and I want to make it at the Division I level. I'm going to play just softball the first year and see if I can handle it along with my schoolwork. Later on, I might think about basketball or soccer."

It's no accident that Wolff turned out to be one of the most talented athletes to come out of Carroll County.

First of all, her father, Jim, was a pretty decent sandlot softball player and amateur basketball player, and he tried to teach his daughter as much about sports as possible.

Then Wolff played baseball for six years (ages 7 to 12) against the boys in the Sykesville Little League. And in her spare time, she honed her base-running skills by playing rundown against boys in her backyard.

Playing baseball and sports is a way of life for Wolff.

To many, Wolff is this lucky girl who has so much athletic ability she sometimes seems a little too cocky.

But behind that exterior is a fun-loving teen-ager with a giving heart.

For the past three summers, Wolff has spent one week at Camp Hope in western Maryland helping people less fortunate.

Along with some other teens from the Calvary United Methodist Church in Gamber, Wolff has helped rebuild homes. She has helped put on roofing, drywall, paint and spackling.

Jim Wolff said: "It was a good experience for her. She got to meet people who appreciated what she was doing and some others who resented it."

This summer Wolff will be too busy with college orientation and flipping hamburgers at Roy Rogers to make a return trip to Camp Hope.

But she already has left her mark on a lot of people in need of help.

Amy Wolff is a winner on and off the field.

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