Carson High’s Camryn Quilling has had to be a fighter throughout high school.
Nowhere was her relentless attitude more present than on the softball field or the hardwood across her three-sport career while in a Senators’ uniform.
When the prospect of college athletics approached, Quilling’s hustle was even more apparent as she reached out to school after school across the western United States in hopes of finding a suitable future home.
As options and interest arose for Quilling, junior college became the best and most affordable path for the 5-8 senior.
After looking through programs in the Phoenix area, Quilling got an email from Chandler-Gilbert Community College head coach Bryanne Norris.
Quilling’s visit to the Phoenix area sealed the rest.
“It was the nicest time ever,” said Quilling, who had only ever driven through Arizona. “This is where I want to go. I love this area.”
Fighting through tough times
Quilling feels as though she’s always had the hustle factor, but had to battle through unexpected tragedy her sophomore year when her father and longtime Carson High coach, Shane Quilling, passed away right before softball season.
“He was just that huge impactful person and I never understood until he was gone. That’s when I realized how big of an impact he made on my sports life. I definitely don’t play sports the same,” Quilling said. “There is definitely a huge part of me and what makes me the athlete I am without him.”
The adversity served as a catalyst for her growth in athletics.
Quilling says she doesn’t remember much of her shortened sophomore softball season, but the memories from her junior season fueled a desire to keep after the sport.
“We went so far and we all worked so hard. I fell in love with the sport all over again,” said Quilling. “We had huge comebacks and we all did our job individually, (which) played such a huge role in regionals. After that season, I was like I need to play softball.”
During that junior season in which Carson went 23-9, Quilling hit for an absurd .467 batting average with 14 RBis and a 1.142 OPS.
As a senior, she was honored with a second team all-Sierra League selection in basketball and played 50 sets as a varsity starter for the volleyball team.
As her attention turns to the Coyotes and the Arizona Community College Athletic Conference, Quilling plans to get her bachelor’s degree in nursing with hopes of one day being a NICU nurse.