Women who paved the way: Mo’ne Davis

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Courtesy of Walt Disney Television on Creative Commons

Mo’ne Davis made history at the 2014 Little League World Series where she stunned viewers with her pitching abilities.

Emily Dvareckas, Photo Editor

In light of Women’s History Month, The Hawks’ Herald is featuring important women from throughout history. The third week of March highlights women who have paved the way in sports.

Mo’ne Davis was born on June 24, 2001 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Growing up, Davis played several sports and her natural athleticism was very apparent. When she was 7 years old, one of the program directors at the Marian Anderson Recreation noticed how well she played football with her family members. She was able to tackle and take down her older and bigger family members with ease as well as throw a football in perfect spirals.

Davis was then offered the opportunity to join a basketball practice. She watched intently during the first practice and when she was able to go on the court, she excelled. She went on to be the team’s only girl player; she was the best player on the team. She also began playing soccer and baseball, becoming a great player in both sports.

Davis was able to acquire sponsorships and eventually made enough money to be able to enroll at Chestnut Hill Academy in Philadelphia, a school known for its sports and academics. At this school, Davis played point guard for the basketball team and played shortstop and third base for the baseball team.

During one baseball game, Mo’ne Davis had to substitute in as the pitcher. She did so well that she became a regular pitcher for the team. During the 2014 Little League World Series, Davis pitched a winning game after striking out eight batters in six innings.

During the tournament, Davis was pitching at an average of 71 mph, far faster than the average for her age group. The speed and control she had over the ball mirrors that seen in the major leagues.

She made history with her appearance at the Little League World Series as the fourth American girl and 18th girl overall to play in the tournament, as well as being the first Black female to play. On Aug. 25, 2014, Mo’ne Davis was on the cover of Sports Illustrated, making her the first little league player to be on the cover.

She also won the 2014 Sportskid of the Year award given by Sports Illustrated. In the same year, Davis was named as one of the top 25 most influential teens of 2014 by Time Magazine. In July 2015, Davis won the ESPY award for Best Breakthrough Athlete.

She is currently attending Hampton University where she continues to play the sports that she loves. She has aspirations to be in the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA). Mo’ne Davis broke several barriers before the age of 18 and stands as a trailblazer for women in all sports.