May 15 Burger King Outstanding Student Athlete: SB St. Joseph's Maggie Gillis
Like millions of other Americans, the zombie television smash "The Walking Dead" is appointment viewing for St. Joseph junior Maggie Gillis.
"That's my favorite show of all time, my family is obsessed with it," says Gillis. "I don't want to sound weird when I say gory. But it is gory and I just like it. It's just great."
She is a little sheepish to admit it, but the second baseman is a glutton for gore. Gillis is fascinated by medical issues, especially surgery.
"I think because I've broken like eight or nine bones, so I'm kind of always around doctor's offices," Gillis says of her varied athletic injuries. "After going a lot time I just kind of started asking questions."
"She's just looking for ways to figure things out," adds Indians head coach Earl Keith. "And that's what she does out here with us every day."
That curiosity is a big part of her success on the softball field as well. Gillis is always searching for an edge. A natural righty, she taught herself to bat left-handed.
"She just likes to play so much, she's trying to find her little niches to make her the best player she can be," Keith says. "By going to the left side she just added so much to her game and it's great for us hitting second in the lineup."
Gillis is the second youngest of seven kids. Her dad has coached her since childhood. Three of her older sisters played softball in college. And she is responsible for the family atmosphere in St. Joe's dugout.
"She's the one that helps organize things for pizza parties, going bowling," says Keith. "She's into the team camaraderie."
"Chemistry with the team and the relationship with everyone," Gillis says, describing her favorite aspects of the sport. "It's just a great game. I just love it."