Jim Martin, senior mathematics major and first basemen, has been playing baseball since he was only four years old.
“I can’t ever remember not playing baseball,” Martin said. “It’s been a huge part of my life from the beginning.”
Martin, originally from Ajax, Ontario, learned about Union University while playing baseball for a travel team that often brought him to Memphis, Tennessee. Martin had never lived in the United States until moving to Union to begin his collegiate baseball career.
By 2013, Martin had started 47 games and held a .354 batting average with 58 hits, 16 doubles and 32 RBIs. Martin was also named to the Gulf South Conference Academic Honor Roll. In 2014, Martin was selected for the NCBWA Preseason All-South Region Team and held a .295 batting average with 54 hits, 11 doubles and 25 RBIs.
“I love it because you get a chance to play with guys who enjoy the same thing you do,” Martin said. “You get to compete with other guys who are your best friends, and it’s great to work together as a team.”
Time management has been the most difficult adjustment for Martin as a collegiate athlete.
“You have practice all the time, so you have less time to do classwork,” Martin said. “You can’t put things off or you will run out of time. I’ve learned that through being a collegiate athlete.”
When Martin catches a moment of free time, he enjoys reading and spending time with his fiancé, Jessie Avery, a senior exercise science major at the University of Tennessee at Martin.
Martin is currently in the process of applying for jobs with hopes of being a financial adviser.
Kelly Robey, senior sports management major from New Madrid, Missouri, has been playing softball for around fifteen years and pitching for ten years.
Robey, Union’s starting pitcher and team captain, started 41 games in 2014 with 36 complete games. Robey pitched 293.0 innings with a 2.41 ERA and 346 strikeouts. In 2015, Robey made the GSC Preseason All-Conference Team, titled the GSC Pitcher of the Week four times, achieved TSWA Pitcher of the Week five times and was named the GSC First Team All-Conference Pitcher.
Robey’s favorite aspect of her softball career is the lifelong friendships that have been built because of the sport.
“My favorite memory has been winning the NCCAA National Championship my sophomore year,” Robey said. “We fought very hard, and it showed in the end. It is also a special memory because we beat Shorter University, who has become a rival of ours.”
Robey said that being a collegiate athlete taught her time management, perseverance, sportsmanship, hard work and dedication.
“It has also taught me how to work well with people that I do not get along with,” Robey said. “Off the field I may not have gotten along with someone, but once we stepped on the field we were a team no matter what.”
Robey is also involved with Sigma Delta and works as an assistant to Steven Aldridge, sports information director.
In her free time, Robey enjoys being a fan of the St. Louis Cardinals by watching their games at any chance she gets. Robey also loves spending time with her family and friends.
After graduation, Robey plans to stay at Union to earn a masters of arts in education.
“I chose sport management because one day I want to be an athletic director,” Robey said. “I want to make an impact on young kids lives, and make them believe that they can achieve their dreams with hard work and dedication.”