Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Get to know: On the pitch with Samoan softball player Alia Logoleo

Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air

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Ann-Tauilo Motuga | Reporter/Videographer

Dubbed as one of the top 2022 performers by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA), in the United States, Alia Logoleo is on a steady climb to superstar status in college softball.

Of Samoan heritage, Alia flaunted her softball skills in a recent game against the South Carolina Gamecocks where she laid out a diving grab in the top of the third, securing the first out of the inning. ESPN and ACC Network posted her efforts online which garnered thousands of views and re-shares.

“At that moment I felt so excited because I was able to make a big play behind our pitcher,” Alia says. “I think it’s awesome that people were sharing it. It shows that all the hard work [I’ve been putting in] is not for nothing.”

No stranger to hard work, Alia recorded a seven-game hitting streak in Feb 2020. In 2021, she was the only player to record grand slams on the season. And last year, she led her team with 15 home runs including seven in ACC games and started in all 59 games.

Alia with family. Photo: IG

The rising star credits her family for introducing her to sports at such a young age. Born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, she is the youngest of four. At six years old, she joined a little league softball team, and by the age of eight, she joined her first travel ball team where her love for softball began.

“My mom played softball in college and met my dad playing volleyball so it’s safe to say sports runs in our family,” she says. “I remember we would play wiffle ball in our front yard as a family and my love for softball never changed.”

In her high school years, Alia captained the softball, volleyball and basketball teams and she competed in the 2017 USA High Performance for volleyball while being named in the All-Tournament Team.

Photo: IG – @babylogo

Now, Alia is one of a few female Polynesian representatives playing full-time college softball in Tennessee.

“It is honestly so crazy. Living in Tennessee, I was never around many Polynesians. I remember going to tournaments in Colorado and California and seeing so many Pacific Islanders playing, I loved it!” she says.

“Now that I am in college and don’t really have any Polynesians near me, the best way I stay connected to my culture is through music. My dad had so many CDs growing up, so I know a lot of songs which help me stay connected.”

With the Clemson Softball Program only starting in 2020, Alia and the Clemson Tigers have been building an incredible foundation for Clemson Softball. The team took out the ACC Regular Season, made it into a regional tournament which they also took out, and they made it to the Super Regionals. Logoleo claims that “every year we take a step closer to being at the Women’s College World Series” which is her long-term goal after college.

“I plan on keeping my options open to playing professional softball but at this moment nothing is set in stone. I just hope that I can be a good role model for young Polynesians athletes wanting to play college sports.”

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