Sarah VonSeggern, née Betts, said all she wanted to do when she committed to play softball at Bluffton University was continue to compete in the sport she loved since she was a little kid.
Little did she know, she’d go on to have a standout career as a pitcher that would result in her being inducted into the Bluffton University Athletics Hall of Fame this Saturday at the Sommer Center in Bluffton.
“It’s a really big honor,” VonSeggern, a 2002 Bryan High School graduate, said. “I was pretty excited, and it’s something you work a long time for when you’re there and before, too, because I pitched for a long time. It’s a lot of hard work, and I’m really honored that they thought I deserved that kind of award.”
VonSeggern was a three-sport athlete at Bryan High School in cross country, basketball and softball, and she specialized as a pitcher from a young age.
When it came time to choose a college, VonSeggern said she liked the small town feel of Bluffton, in addition to the opportunity for early playing time.
She became Bluffton’s top pitcher early in her career, and throughout her four years, broke nearly every one of the program’s career pitching records, including wins (60), strikeouts (749), appearances (109), games started (96), complete games (80), innings pitched (645), shutouts (22) lowest earned run average (1.36) and lowest opponent batting average (.176).
She also threw three no-hitters, seven one-hitters and 14 two-hitters and holds the school record for most strikeouts in a game with 16.
Her best year came during her sophomore year in 2004 when she sported a 25-7 record with a 0.74 ERA and 273 strikeouts in 209 innings pitched.
Of everything, though, she said the best part of her experience at Bluffton revolved around the relationships and friendships she built.
“All the teammates that I had over the years, I still talk to a handful of them,” VonSeggern said. “That’s one of the things I enjoyed most, was my memories of all the people I played with.”
VonSeggern graduated from Bluffton in 2006 with a degree in chemistry and physics with a 7-12 teaching license.
These days, she teaches chemistry at Archbold High School, where she helped coach the Blue Streak softball teams for 10 seasons, before stepping down a few years ago to spend more time with her family.