Not many star high school softball players leave paradise to play the game they love in Fargo, N.D., but that’s literally what this Bison senior did. Alex Sobrero grew up in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains in the town of Paradise, Calif., a town of 26,000, approximately two hours north of Sacramento. Sobrero’s production is ascending, entering her senior season, even though her geographical location keeps her on a flat plane.
Bison Illustrated: Anything different in your approach to the season knowing it’s your last?
Alex Sobrero: “No, probably the same as all the rest of the years here. But I do have more knowledge now than I did three years before.”
BI: What happened in between your sophomore and junior season to made your numbers jump as significantly as they did?
AS: “I think it’s just a part of growing up and developing your skill set as you get older and older because that helps. You learn how to focus better once you’re through a couple years, so I think that helped.”
BI: Why do your teammates view you as a leader?
AS: “I don’t know. I’m easy to get along with I guess and I’m pretty chill. A lot of people, we get along, I don’t really butt heads with a lot of people and if I do it’s nothing too detrimental.”
BI: What are your expectations as a team this season?
AS: “The ceiling for every team is the World Series, but we just want to win one game at a time. We really want a championship.”
BI: I guess the ceiling for every team is the College World Series, but realistically that’s not always the case. Do you guys think it’s realistic?
AS: “The mindset is always to work championships backward for every practice. We come in, work hard and then play our games. When that game’s over, it’s time for the next chapter, the next game.”
BI: How did NDSU steal you away from California after hitting over .500 your senior season?
AS: “I was playing at Huntington Beach and I didn’t really know where I wanted to go at all. I was playing on two different teams in this tournament and Jamie (Trachsel) and Darren (Mueller) came up to me and actually asked me, ‘Would you like to come out and visit North Dakota?’ And the first question I asked was ‘Do you guys have trees?’ And they said yeah so I said sure I’ll come out. And I came out and there were barely any trees (laughs).”
BI: Why did you ask if there were trees?
AS: “Because I’m from Northern California, so it’s like mountains and trees everywhere and that’s just what I’ve grown up with. So I came out here and it’s the polar opposite, but I still liked it a lot. Our team is like a family so that’s what I liked most.”
BI: What’s Paradise, Calif., like?
AS: “We’re up in the bottom of the foothills and there are trees everywhere. It’s basically the opposite of here. All the roads aren’t straight; they’re curvy. There are hills, but it’s kind of a small town where everybody knows everybody.”
BI: What do you miss most about home?
“Just the mountains and trees I guess. Everything is just flat here and you can see things forever. And probably less wind.”
BI: What’s the biggest misconception people back home have of Fargo, N.D.?
AS: “The movie. Every time they ask if I’ve seen the movie and ask if people get chopped up in wood chippers and I’m just like, ‘No, of course, people don’t get chopped up in wood chippers.’ Every time I say I live in Fargo they always ask me if I’ve seen the movie. It’s always about the movie (laughs)”
BI: What’s the best thing about Fargo, outside of the softball team and the University?
AS: “Everybody is super nice. That’s really cool. I’m from Northern California but in Southern California the people aren’t very nice. Everyone here is nice and willing to hold the door open for you and say please and thank you and all that stuff.”
AS: “When I go home I snowboard a lot. That’s my other favorite thing to do and my sisters and I, we always do stuff outside. We’ll go fishing, hunting, and stuff.”
BI: Is there a ski resort near where you live?
AS: “Tahoe is like two hours away. In the other direction, there are mountains that are two hours from us.”
BI: What do you want to do after softball?
AS: “I’m trying to get into radiology school right now. I’m waiting to hear back, so hopefully that goes over well. (I’ll go to) schools around here.”