Nolan McCarthy and Anna Kim score The Occidental’s Athlete of the Week

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Nolan McCarthy (senior), this week’s athlete of the week, is a member of the men's baseball team at Occidental College. Anna Kim (first year), this week’s athlete of the week, is a member of the women’s golf team at Occidental College. Thursday, Mar. 21, 2019. Nancy Zhou/The Occidental

Nolan McCarthy

Nolan McCarthy (junior) earned the win as Occidental’s baseball team defeated Bowdoin College 14–1 March 16 at Anderson Field. McCarthy pitched 6.0 innings, allowing 3 hits and 0 earned runs.

“It went pretty well,” McCarthy said. “I thought I did a good job of staying focused throughout and treating them with respect and making sure I didn’t take them for granted.”

Head coach Luke Wetmore explained that McCarthy was feeling so good about his performance that he was a little reluctant to come out of the game at all.

“He probably could have gone and would have gone a complete game there,” Wetmore said. “He wanted to keep going, he’s a competitor, but sometimes you have to protect your players from themselves in some cases.”

Wetmore praised McCarthy’s consistency not just in this game, but across the entire season.

“I really do believe his preparation and the consistency of his preparation leads to the consistency of his performances,” Wetmore said.

McCarthy has earned four wins already this season with no losses and leads the Tigers’ pitching staff with an ERA of 1.06.

“I’m just trying to do my part,” McCarthy said. “We missed the playoffs by one game the last two years, so I’m trying to do everything I can to make sure that doesn’t happen again.”

McCarthy said his ambitions in baseball go beyond playing at Occidental.

“I’m going to try and play professionally if I can,” McCarthy said. “A lot of things have got to go right, I’ve got to keep continuing to get better and stuff, but yeah, that’s definitely a goal of mine — to play professional baseball.”

Wetmore has picked up on McCarthy’s ability to improve year after year and explained how McCarthy has progressed.

“His development has been on multiple levels,” Wetmore said. “There’s a maturity level in terms of dealing with when it goes wrong. His stuff got better, his velocity got better. His stamina, his conditioning, his ability to go further into games has gotten better and really allowed him to be the Friday starter.”

While McCarthy has his individual goals in his mind, both he and his coach emphasized how their primary goal is to help the team reach the playoffs this season.

“As far as individual goals go, yeah, I’m motivated by the numbers and stuff, they’re important and they do tell some of the story,” McCarthy said. “But it doesn’t really matter how well you do unless you win, so I’m just going to try and do whatever I can to help my team win and every time I get the ball on the mound, I’m going to give it my best for them and for me.”

Anna Kim

March 11–12, Anna Kim finished tied for fifth overall at the California Lutheran University Invitational and helped Occidental’s women’s golf team to a third-place finish at the competition. Kim put together rounds of 84 on Monday and 82 on Tuesday, making her final score 166, just ten strokes behind the front runner, Annie Hay from Redlands.

“I felt like I was hitting the ball really good both days,” Kim said. “To be honest, I wasn’t completely happy with my score because I felt I could have done a lot better if I had just putted better.”

Kim and the rest of women’s golf team have seen their performances on the course lead to national recognition. They have been ranked as high as 23rd in the nation this season under head coach Will Morris.  Kim’s teammate, [shorten that thick hyperlink -EJW] Katy Uchiyama (senior), explained how the first year has been a great addition to the team.

“Anna has had a great start to the season,” Uchiyama said via email. “In the fall she played well and is continuing to play well so far this spring. I’m looking forward to our upcoming tournaments this season and think we can do well as a team.”

Despite her consistently strong play, Kim explained how she wasn’t completely happy with her game. Because of this, she decided to put in some extra work over spring break with Kim’s coach, who is also her father.

“This spring break I had a lesson with my coach,” Kim said. “I feel like I have something to focus on now because I didn’t really know what I was doing wrong, so I was changing a lot of things and getting frustrated. But now I have a direction.”

With Kim still in just her first season of collegiate golf, Uchiyama said she believes Kim can go on to achieve some special results during her Occidental career.

“So far she’s shown how much talent she has and I think she’ll continue to get better,” Uchiyama said via email. “I hope within her four years she’s able to win a SCIAC event and I definitely think it’s very possible.”