FALL RIVER: Molly and Rory White get their love for baseball genetically.
The two athletes from Fall River—Rory at Newbridge Academy and Molly at Lockview High—both play multiple sports which keeps their family very busy. At times it means a lot more meals on the couch table than at the actual dinner table. Dad Jerry is also a coach with the Tri-County Rangers, leaving mom Arlene to be the chauffeur/cheerleader for all the sports craziness.
It’s also very rare to be able to get all four in one room for any length of time, but that wasn’t the case on a mid-October Sunday when they all sat down with The Laker for an interview.
“I feel like Anne of Green Gables in the middle of PEI because this house is so full of red dirt,” chuckled Arlene MacAskill speaking about what a summer of baseball is like for the family. “It’s crazy the amount of ball that we play.”
She said that they’ve been so fortunate to be part of their kids lives as they’ve grown up, playing different sports.
“We’ve had so many great coaches in this community, people like Jenn Weatherhead, Sean Hanlon, Dave Blackmore, the Lancasters, all of the Tri-County/LWF coaches and so many more. You see and appreciate the time and effort they put into their sports and our kids. The kids of our Fall River community certainly benefit from it,” MacAskill said. “And then Baseball N.S. and Molly’s coaches on those teams have put such a blanket of support around girls learning baseball, it’s unbelievable. The team atmosphere on that girls team is so positive.”
Rory started because of his dad who used to play.
“I think me playing got dad back into it as he started to do some coaching with the LWF teams,” said Rory.
The two have opposite favourite baseball players, but when the Houston Astros are on television one better watch out. They both are rooting for the Texas team, the defending World Series champions. Rory lists Chicago Cubs Anthony Rizzo as his favourite player, while Astros powerhouse George Springer is Molly’s favourite MLB player. They both picked Houston to win this year’s World Series.
Molly was named Baseball Nova Scotia’s Minor Baseball Female Athlete of the Year, while her N.S. U16 girls who made a historic first of making the national final, and Rory’s N.S. U17 boys Selects were co-winners of the Team of the Year honours.
“It’s an amazing feeling to be recognized as an athlete and a baseball player,” said Molly. “I’m very happy with how myself and my teams did this year.
“I feel like it’s a great accomplishment. It’s nice to earn the same award that others in the past who I look up to have won.”
Rory had some thoughts on the co-team awards.
“I think we got great genes from the parents,” he said with laughter. “It wasn’t all us. Both our teams had great coaches. They’re great people.
“I never thought to much about it before and when it was announced it was pretty cool that our teams were co-team award recipients.”
The balance is difficult between sports and school, but it’s both kids top priority and they know it.
“School is obviously a priority and when needed we miss our practice or games for school work, but we try to balance it out as best we can,” said Molly.
Molly got her start in baseball innocently enough. She enjoys the team camaraderie that came with being on the girls baseball team.
“I was watching one of Rory’s games and I went up to my dad and asked him if I could play baseball,” recalled Molly. “He asked me if I wanted to be like Rory and I responded that I did,” she said. “I then started in rookie ball and I played one year of that. I was playing soccer at the time, but switched to baseball.”
Rory, 16, started in the Rally cap program with LWF Baseball when he was six-years-old, while Molly, in Grade 9 at Lockview, began playing ball when she was seven-years-old.
The two chuckled when asked what other sports they play.
“The shorter list might be what sports don’t they play,” interjected dad Jerry to some chuckles from the four of them.
Rory also plays golf and badminton, working hard to perfect both sports and be the best he can. Meanwhile, Molly’s list includes: girls flag football at Lockview High; volleyball; and basketball.
“We’ve narrowed it down as we’ve become older,” said Molly with a smile.
He said the on field success can be attributed to the home.
“It’s a team effort at home,” said Rory. “My sister is doing awesome things. My parents are very supportive and my grandfather. They all do things behind the scenes to help make us better that you don’t see.
“We owe a huge thanks to our family for all the opportunities we have had,” added Molly.