SAN ANTONIO – Judson star softball player Keely Williams will get to represent Team USA after being named to the 2021 USA Softball U-18 Junior Women’s National Team Friday.
“When I found out, it was actually during one of my games up here in Oklahoma,” Williams said. “I found out right after my game, and I was super excited. It was also very exciting to see the rest of my other teammates -- all five of us -- made it.”
Williams is referencing teammates on the Texas Bombers Gold 18U team. Five of them were invited to the USA Softball selection trials, and all five made the final roster. The process to make the team started months ago and was capped off this week when the final 33 girls were invited for a two-day selection trial process held at the USA Softball Hall of Fame Complex in Oklahoma City.
“It was pretty tough,” Williams said. “Each day took about 12 hours minimum. It was go all the time, pushing hard. In my mind, it was a little bit of a struggle because I’ve never been that sore. But in the end, it was pretty cool to be around all those elite and special players.”
Congratulations to Judson outfielder @keelyyawilliams for making the USA Softball U-18 National Team. She’s ready to rep the USA and San Antonio. @rocketball_JHS @JISD_ATHLETICS @USASoftballJWNT @InstantReplaySA #KSATsports pic.twitter.com/Um3W9zJZl5— Larry Ramirez (@LRam2) June 28, 2021
Williams, who hit 19 home runs this season while leading the Judson Rockets to the program’s first UIL Class 6A State title game, wasn’t really phased by the pressure of qualifying for Team USA.
“When I came up here to Oklahoma, I still felt the same, felt normal, but it felt like I had butterflies in my stomach the night before, but once I walked up to the field for tryouts, I felt completely normal,” Williams said.
The 16-player roster and two replacement players will compete in both the World Cup held from the end of August to early September in Peru and the Junior Pan American games in late November/early December in Colombia.