Megan Overton began playing softball at age 3.
Within a few years, she was playing travel ball and quickly carved a reputation as a solid hitter and slick-fielding shortstop.
At 11, she learned to pitch; and she quickly excelled at that, too.
By the time she joined Greenwood Community High School’s varsity team as a freshman, she was already on the radar of a host of major college programs. By the end of her sophomore season, she had a scholarship offer from Boston College, which she orally accepted.
As evidenced by all of the above, Overton has been one of the state’s top high school players throughout her career. But her career is barely half over.
Although she looks forward to college and the opportunity to pursue a career in medicine, she is only a junior and has unfinished business with the Woodmen.
Greenwood has been one of Class 4A’s top teams the past three years but has failed to advance from a sectional field that is easily one of the state’s toughest.
Overton’s objective is to lead the Woodmen on a longer postseason run. She’ll worry about college after that.
“The last two years we had expectations way higher than (winning) sectionals, and we seemed to fall short every single time,” said Overton, a two-position starter. “Maybe this year will be our year that we get out of it, finally.”
Winning has always been Overton’s motivation. Woodman coach Greg Norwood said her competitive fire is her chief strength. She simply hates to lose.
“It’s just the mindset that she has. She’s got a little bit of extra swagger,” Norwood said. “She just really is that kid you sometimes you look at and go, ‘Wow, is she cocky or is she confident?’ And she’s just confident.
“She thinks she can beat everybody and win everything until the last pitch is thrown and the game’s over.”
The Woodmen don’t often lose when Overton pitches. Heading into the season, she had a two-year record of 19-1 with 192 strikeouts. The numbers would have been far greater had she not labored for two seasons behind another of the state’s top pitchers, former teammate Brittany Gray, who is a freshman at the University of Georgia.
This season, Overton is 2-1 with 37 strikeouts. The loss came Saturday in a 10-inning, 2-1 defeat at Mooresville. The game was the second of a double-header. She pitched every inning of both, picking up a 1-0 victory in the first game before dropping the second in extra innings.
Even in defeat, Norwood marveled at Overton’s competitiveness, citing an array of diving catches and chasing down and tagging out runners in an effort to salvage the second game.
“She wanted to make sure she was doing everything she could to give us every chance we had to win that game,” Norwood said. “It’s just a little extra confidence that she plays with that takes her to a different level.”
And it’s that quality, along with her rare skills, that led to an early NCAA Division I scholarship commitment. She selected Boston College after drawing additional Division I interest from Minnesota, North Carolina, IUPUI and the University of South Carolina-Upstate.
A virtual lifelong player, playing Division I softball has been a nearly lifelong goal.
“I’ve worked hard my entire life to get to go to college to play the sport I love,” said Overton, who will pitch and play shortstop at Boston College. “I wanted to go to the best school I could go to to play the best competition out there, because after all those years of hard work, why not try to see if you’re better than everybody else who’s worked that hard?”
Besides softball, Overton — who is still recovering from foot surgery last August that has hampered her running and hitting — also plays varsity basketball. But softball is her passion. And she cites three reasons.
She said: “I love being outside. I love working with everybody. I don’t mind getting dirty.”
Name: Megan Overton
High school: Greenwood
College plans: Has orally committed to Boston College
Hobbies: Baking, also plays varsity basketball at Greenwood
Favorite TV show: “Pretty Little Liars”
Favorite movie: “Cinderella”
Family: Parents, Earl and Laura Overton; sister, Rachel Overton, who plays softball at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri