Jan. 22, 2012
BERKELEY - For those close to the California softball program, one freshman will be a familiar face for Danielle Henderson has finally joined her big sister Jolene in Berkeley. Having attended Golden Bear softball games for years and owning a softball resume that has garnered national attention, the younger Henderson was more than suited to don the Blue & Gold. At the conclusion of her senior season at Sheldon High School in Elk Grove, Calif., Henderson had played for the No. 1 team in the country, led the Huskies to multiple CIF championships, was a three-time scholar-athlete, a three-time member of the All-Delta River League First Team and the 2011 Sacramento Bee Player of the Year. Additionally, on the club circuit, Henderson won 16U nationals and more with the Lady Magic and also played in the 2011 Under Armour All-America Game. CalBears.com caught up with Henderson to learn all things Danielle.
CalBears.com: What made you choose Cal?
Danielle Henderson: I chose Cal because it is the No. 1 public school in the nation, and because my sister and I knew we wanted to play together. I also liked how Cal has a bunch of crazy people, so I ﬁt in perfectly because I'm not normal.
CalBears.com: What are your hobbies outside of softball?
DH: I like to color in coloring books. I know it sounds childish, but I like to stay within the lines.
CalBears.com: Do you have any unique stories about yourself that set you apart from your teammates?
DH: I've had the number 8 since I started softball. I started with it because it was my mom's favorite number and I have had it ever since! When I didn't make the all-star team and was in tears, my sister took number 8 for me.
CalBears.com: What's your favorite part of Berkeley and/or the Cal campus?
DH: I like how Cal has a bunch of crazy people, so I ﬁt in perfectly. It's interesting to walk around and see a variety of stuff.
CalBears.com: What is the best thing about being a part of Cal softball?
DH: The best parts about Cal softball are my teammates! They are the best!
CalBears.com: Did you grow up watching Cal athletics? What has it been like to represent them?
DH: I've watched Cal athletics since I was a freshman in high school because I knew then that I was interested in Cal and that it was the school for me. I've been ecstatic to represent them and have the opportunity to wear their uniform. Ever since I verballed, I've been picturing it. It's everything I have ever imagined.
CalBears.com: What has been your favorite part of college life so far?
DH: I love how I go to college with my brother and sister.
CalBears.com: What are you planning on or thinking of majoring in?
DH: I plan on being a pediatrician because I ﬁnd it amusing to entertain little kids. I have always found an interest in the medical ﬁeld because you change people's lives every day. It's still not set in stone, but it is deﬁnitely the idea.
CalBears.com: What class did you most enjoy this fall?
DH: The class I enjoyed most was History of Hollywood. I liked how I was able to put what I used into daily life because I love movies, and we analyzed them.
CalBears.com: What were your initial impressions of Berkeley?
DH: Dang, I have to walk these hills!?! But, that it was so different and beautiful. I absolutely loved it!
CalBears.com: What would you like to be doing in 10 years?
DH: Making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for the kids and being a pediatrician.
CalBears.com: What is the best piece of advice you've ever received?
DH: Failing to prepare is preparing to fail. You can only do as well as you have set out for yourself. If you have worked and done everything possible, then there's nothing else to worry about.
CalBears.com: What is your biggest pet peeve?
DH: When people walk down hills so hard you can hear their footsteps. This is my pet peeve ever since I got to Berkeley.
CalBears.com: Who is your biggest hero?
DH: I wouldn't say I have one hero, but my number one heroes would be my family. They have been with me through everything and have helped me grow. My family has shown me which path to take. They taught me that determination pushed you only as far as you want, but combined with hard work you are unstoppable.
CalBears.com: Do you have a hidden talent? What is it?
DH: My hidden talent is being really good at Pictionary.
CalBears.com: What is one thing you can't live without?
DH: I can't live without my family!!! They mean way too much to me and have made a huge difference in every aspect of my life.
CalBears.com will be posting a release or feature every day until the 2012 season begins on Feb. 10. Check back Monday to read about the Bears' pre-game rituals. To see all 30-for-30 releases and features in one place, please click here.