Crookston High School Senior Jenna Coauette has been a staple in the Crookston Pirate softball lineup for the past five years, both at the plate and in the field. Coauette has been pitching for the Pirates since her eighth-grade year, but her playing days started at a much younger age. “I’ve been playing softball since I was first in Tee-ball,” said Coauette. “I started playing because my dad has always loved softball and he played baseball in high school growing up, so he decided to put me in Tee-ball and I couldn’t be happier that he did.”

Coauette loves being in the circle for the Pirates and having an opportunity to help lead her team to victory. While she has been pitching for the Pirates Varsity team since eighth grade, she has also been doing that since her younger years. “Pitching is always something I’ve done,” said Coauette. “It started back when I was playing in our Summer Rec league so I’ve just always had that position.”

While Coauette certainly gets attention for being in the circle for Crookston, she also has been a big part of Crookston’s success at the plate. Coauette has been hitting in the middle of the lineup for the Pirates every single game this year and has had multiple extra-base hits. For as much as she enjoys the pitching side of the game, hitting for her takes the cake. “By far my favorite part is when I’m at home plate and in the batters box,” said Coauette. “Batting is just something where I can let loose and it’s really fun being up there. I have taken pride in being on the mound as well and I’ve definitely learned my role over the years and just try and do whatever I can to help the team.”

One person who has noticed how well Jenna has fit in with her role is her coach Sunny Bowman. “Jenna has been one of our best performers the last few years. When I started as the Head Coach it was the year of COVID, and after the first few practices you could tell she was going to be one of our top pitchers if that season hadn’t been cut short,” said Crookston Head Softball Coach Sunny Bowman. “In her junior season and now senior season, she has been such an amazing leader not only with encouragement but with action. I think that was a big reason she was our team MVP last year as a Junior.”

In her Junior Season, Coauette pitched 90 out of the team’s 110 innings but handled the responsibility and the stress excellently. She is once again tasked with pitching a ton of innings and has pitched in almost every single game so far this season for the Pirates.

Crookston has had a tough start to the season as a team going 1-7 thus far, but that has not discouraged Coauette or the rest of the Pirates. “I definitely want to get a few more wins and I feel we can definitely accomplish that,” said Coauette. “That would help get us in a better position for the Section Tournament, and I want to win the first playoff game that we play in this year.”

There is no questioning that Coauette is a special player, but what qualities do you need to have that title? “She is extremely dedicated, has a desire to learn, and a willingness to give everything she has,” said Crookston Head Softball Coach Sunny Bowman. “She is always looking for ways to improve and grow and by making herself better she makes our team better and that’s what great players do.”

Though her time as a Pirate may be coming to an end, Coauette says the game has taught her many life lessons that she’ll always take with her. “I just love softball. I’ve played other sports, but nothing compares to this game,” said Coauette. “I couldn’t be more thankful to be a part of this team and all the different memories and lessons that have been taught over the years. It is definitely something I’ll take with me the rest of my life, and probably something I will continue to try and do.”

Speaking of memories for Coauette, plenty have been made over the years, both individually and as a part of Crookston Pirate Softball team. She had one that came to mind that so far stands above the rest. “I would probably go back to last season in our game at Sacred Heart where I hit a Home Run,” said Coauette. “The best part of it was that my dad was standing out there and was able to get my ball afterward so that was really cool and special for me.”

Her Head Coach will always remember Jenna for a different reason. “Something that I will always remember about Jenna is our ability to joke around together and the look that she gives me when it’s time for me to just stop talking,” said Crookston Head Softball Coach Sunny Bowman. “I am very honored to have been able to coach Jenna in these last couple of seasons and I have loved every moment of it.”

Coauette said she has had a few college coaches talk to her about playing at the next level, but she will be attending the University of North Dakota in the fall and majoring in Biology with a pre-med route. She will consider walking on and trying out for the softball team but said she is still unsure. For now, she will enjoy every opportunity she gets to put on the Pirate uniform and compete with her teammates before the season ends.

Jenna Coauette