Softballer Kannan commits to Brandeis


provided by Ragini Kannan

Kannan (middle) pitches a bright green softball.

Pravar Mukkala, Opinions Editor

Ever since she was nine, Ragini Kannan has been playing softball and has progressively gotten more comfortable with the sport. Now as a senior, she has decided to continue her softball and academic career at Brandeis University as part of the Class of 2026.

Kannan has played softball for a club since she was young and fondly remembers traveling to different places in the country for games. Softball was a way she could get out of the house and be active.

“The past year, I joined a more competitive team where we traveled to Colorado, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, every week for a month or two,” Kannan said. “And I loved it so much. [Softball’s] always just been something that I’ve done.”

The softball position that feels most natural to Kannan is pitching, as it comes easier to her.

“I’ve always been good at [pitching], but I’ve learned to work at it and improve my skills to become stronger at it,” Kannan said.

Softball is a way for Kannan to stay active and competitive with her peers. Playing since she was young helped her realize how competitive she really was, but also taught her how to stay calm in different situations where she is stressed. Additionally, balancing practices and games with academics also taught Kannan how to manage her time.

“Softball [practice] is every day unless we have games,” Kannan said. “My freshman year was the first time ever playing an actual high school varsity sport and dealing with really hard classes […] in the beginning, it was a little tough, but I’ve learned to manage my time.”

Learning how to play and honing her skills wasn’t something Kannan did entirely on her own; indeed, her teammates and especially coaches supported and helped her. Many of Kannan’s coaches recommended her to other instructors where she would get more softball exposure.

“I don’t think I would have been committed if one of my coaches hadn’t recommended me to the current team that I’m on,” Kannan said. “I definitely [appreciate] all the coaches that I’ve played with and all the teammates because they gave me support.”

Apart from softball, another thing Kannan is interested in is medicine and biology and plans to pursue that at Brandeis, in addition to its softball program.

“[Brandeis is] primarily a research school, which I’m really interested in,” Kannan said. “It’s pretty close to Boston, which I think is good because [there are] a lot of […] medical institutes in Boston that I could possibly intern at, or even go and shadow a doctor.”

Kannan isn’t alone in her interests to study biology, and many of her future teammates at Brandeis also study science.

“Most of the girls on the [Brandeis softball] team major in biology and stuff like that,” Kannan said. “[…] So it’s not like I’m the only one going through this struggle of pursuing a hard major [and being on the team].”

Kannan visited the Brandeis campus twice, once for a general college tour, and the other after she committed, loving it each time. The second time, she met the coach of the softball team and some of the current team members.

In the end, Kannan is excited to see where Brandeis and softball will take her.

“No matter what, there’s always improvements that I can make,” Kannan said. “[Softball has] taught me to be more aggressive with myself in a way so I can become the best I possibly can for my team.”