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My Signature: Trinity Johnson on Having Her Jersey Retired
Softball  . 

My Signature: Trinity Johnson on Having Her Jersey Retired

by Brad Muller, Director of Content

Trinity Johnson (1995-97) put up pitching numbers that will be hard to match. Now, the 1997 Honda Award-winner as the nation’s top college softball player will be the first University of South Carolina softball player to have her jersey retired at the school with the unveiling prior to Saturday’s game against Alabama at Carolina Softball Stadium at Beckham Field. Johnson was an All-American and unanimous selection as SEC Player of the Year in 1997 after leading the nation with a 0.38 ERA and 399 strikeouts, while posting a 34-4 record as the Gamecocks reached the Women’s College World Series. What’s more impressive is that she did not allow an earned run in conference play that year. She was inducted into the University of South Carolina Association of Lettermen’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 2004.

I was shocked when I found out (about jersey being retired). It’s such a blessing to be the first. There are so many wonderful memories and so many amazing women who have played here. For me to be chosen as the first to have this honor, there are two words together; honor and blessing.

It still seems somewhat surreal.

Of all the honors and statistics, my senior year ERA is what I’m most proud of, by far. My SEC ERA was 0.00. That’s easily the best stat.

There are so many memories! Road trips on the bus. I remember Carrie Lyons, specifically, dancing up and down the aisles.  One of my other memories was winning the SEC. We all came to the center circle, and we all tackled each other. I kind of skipped out and went and gave Coach (Joyce) Compton a hug. She, in her true nature, just stood in the dugout and kind of watched it all happen. It was fun to bring her into that more.

A lot of people don’t remember that I was a transfer here. I went to school out there (in California) and didn’t have the best experience my freshman year. Carrie Dever was the assistant coach here, and we were long-term family friends. I wanted to be in the south and everything fell into place.

(My coaches) helped me in so many ways. They helped me become a better player physically, but, by far, it was my mental game. My emotional game and stability were, by far, improved while I was here.

Having my family here means everything. My parents are the only reason I got this far. To have my kids (four-year-old twins Alberta and Shepard) here; they’re just old enough where they might remember it, so it’s fun. I don’t know what they know and understand. So, this will be fun for them to watch with all the crowds and the cameras.

Now, I’m a sonographer (in Memphis, Tenn.). I do ultrasound. I look at babies all day. At least that’s what people think.

I don’t actually watch or play softball anymore. I don’t know why that is, exactly. There was a lot of inner turmoil for me with how my career ended. People think I’m crazy because I had so much success. I don’t think I went out the way I wanted to. My college career was amazing, but when I played with the (U.S.) National Team and professionally, I had some injuries. It didn’t end the way I’d hoped.

(For Alumni Weekend) It’s always fun to come back, relive the days and see friendly faces and all the good happy moments. I’m so honored and blessed to leave a legacy here and that all the future generations will be able to see that, look at what I did and what our team did, and also look at the generations that led up to that.

I am the first jersey being retired, so there was never that idea in my mind that one day my jersey is going to be up there. It’s awesome to come back here and have the memories, and now to have this kind of memory. This school is so much fun just as a student, and then to be an athlete and help bring it forward in the SEC; it was just fun to be a part of that.

I’m totally nervous about throwing out the (ceremonial) first pitch (Saturday). I’m sure I will do fine. It’s always fun for me to get back out there for a hot second. Hopefully it will be a pitch that gets over the plate!