John Carroll softball catcher Juliana Aragon has a chance to test herself against college-level players in the Netherlands

Sep. 28—Juliana Aragon is a 15-year-old sophomore at John Carroll School and an avid softball player who has a chance to play the game she loves in the Netherlands.

"I've been selected to go play in the Netherlands and to represent the United States and Maryland playing against Olympic college players," Aragon said. "I got seen in a showcase in Massachusetts, New England's Finest, and that's where I got my first college interest email. I got selected to be a part of this."

Aragon is referring to The Cup, which is an opportunity to learn, play and experience what it is like to train and compete at the college level through softball.

Aragon, a catcher, is elated to be a part, especially since she's only 5-foot tall.

"I feel really good about it, being of my height, I'm 5-foot, so obviously I'm not that tall, especially being that most catchers are 5-8 and above. It really means a lot to me, because a lot of people tell me that I'm not going to go places because of my height," Aragon said. "So, playing softball, that's really stuck with me, it's why I want to prove them wrong and I want to show them that height doesn't matter and it's about how hard you play. You may see 5-foot out, and that's my height, but in my heart, I play like I'm 6-foot."

The trip happens in January and the Netherlands is a place she's never been. Aragon was born and raised in Arizona, but moved to Maryland five years ago, currently residing in Fallston.

"It's really an opportunity that I'm extremely grateful for, because not many people can do this, especially being from Arizona and like a very small town. It just means that I can do what I love, go visit places that people always dream of going," Aragon said.

The trip schedule calls it an eight-day trip. The softball tournament games will happen over two days.

"I hope to get better, but also to see what it's like playing the older girls and to see how fast their game is," Aragon said. "So I know where college stands and how fast that game is, so I can get faster in my speed and see their mentality."

Aragon's first and only interest email came from Wellsley College in Massachusetts.

"I really hope to go to Duke, N.C. State or Virginia," she said. That's with the plan to play softball and study business and economics with the desire to work as a lawyer in contract law.

"What keeps me interested is just the idea of getting to play in college and getting to be seen on TV and getting that recruiting experience and relationship that you build with your teammates. I'm excited to go to practice to see the girls and learn," Aragon said.

The trip is obviously not free and Aragon is hoping to receive some support from the community through a GoFundMe account entitled, Please help me get to the Netherlands! By Juliana Aragon.