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Delay of Game: Ace’s Start Interrupted by Quiz

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India Caldwell was keeping her eye on the clock while she was in the circle, only it wasn’t the new pitch clock.

The UC San Diego pitcher had to leave the game a few minutes before 2 p.m. PT on Friday afternoon no matter what was taking place. Caldwell needed to take a quiz for her PSYC 2, Biological Foundations class.

Once the game against the University of North Florida reached the fifth inning of the ASU Invitational, Caldwell raced to the guest locker rooms at Arizona State and made sure the WiFi was working. She connected with her professor via Zoom and began showcasing her surroundings to ensure she wasn’t cheating.

Dressed in her full uniform and cleats, Caldwell spent 10 minutes taking the quiz before racing back to the dugout and re-entering the game in the seventh inning with the tying run at the plate. The junior righthander secured what will surely be one of the most memorable wins of her career.

“It’s the life of a student-athlete I guess,” Caldwell said. “I thought it was kind of funny. It makes for a good story.”

Caldwell had planned to take the quiz right after UC San Diego’s 6-4 win over UNF. But the game before ran long and required her to improvise. Caldwell had informed her coaches about the potential conflict and they were ready for the scenario. Gabby Williams was in the lineup as a DP and took over in the circle during Caldwell’s absence.

“I made it 100 percent clear that I wanted to go in once I got back if they needed me,” said Caldwell, who gave up six hits and one earned run in 4.2 IP. “I was ready to get the ball again once I came back from taking the quiz.”

Caldwell studied both her psychology notes and opposing hitters the night before the quiz and at the field Friday before the game began. By Saturday, she already knew her grade. It was a B.

“It was alright,” Caldwell said. “That is kind of what I expected with what was going on.”

Caldwell, a political science major, makes academics a high priority. The junior college transfer hopes to be commissioned into the Marine Corps once she graduates. Her goal is to become a pilot and fly fighter jets. 

Last week, Caldwell was selected to be a Student Naval Aviator. She leaves June 30th for Quantico, Virginia, where she will be put through leadership courses, physical training and classroom studies. 

Although she would have preferred to throw a complete game and not leave her team in the middle of a start for any reason, Caldwell understands the order of priorities. 

“We are scholar-athletes and the scholar part comes first,” she said. “I have to do a good job as a student if I want to be an athlete.”