The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Homeruns of a hometown hero

Photo by Photo by Abbey Santoro

Coming off of a successful freshman year, sophomore outfielder Bre Warren has taken on a newfound sense of confidence as she preps for the 2022 spring season. 

It was an abnormally windy Sunday afternoon at Davis Diamond in College Station, and Texas A&M softball was facing No. 23 South Carolina in the final match of a triple header.
With no one on base and one out on the board in the bottom of the first inning, freshman Bre Warren stepped up to the plate on March 26. With a 2-2 count, Warren smacked the ball into right field and watched intently as it sailed over the fence through the strong winds for the game’s first run.
This moment was critical for the team, as it paved the way for a narrow 2-1 victory to complete a sweep against the Gamecocks. It was an even more special moment for Warren, who had just secured the first home run of her collegiate career. To top it all off, she would be awarded SEC Player of the Week four days later.
Warren went on to hit two more home runs for the Aggies during her freshman campaign. The outfielder also batted .308 and earned SEC All-Freshman Team and SEC Second Team selections.
While Warren’s freshman heroics and local high school career made her a College Station standout, her relationship with the Bryan-College Station community extends further than many other popular athletes.
Her father, Ty Warren, attended A&M and chose to stay in the area to raise Bre and her five sisters. Growing up near the A&M softball program allowed Bre to become familiar with the staff at a relatively young age. Bre was 11 years old when she first met A&M softball coach Jo Evans.
Evans, who has coached the A&M softball team since 1997, said she first saw Bre play because her teammate’s mother was on the A&M faculty. Over the years, Evans has built a strong bond with Bre and the Warren family.
Evans said their family’s bond made Bre a great fit for A&M’s culture.
“It was fun recruiting Bre,” Evans said. “It always seemed like a good fit because of their family values. They’re very loyal and care about each other. They are really a tight, tight-knit family. That’s right up our alley at A&M.”
Despite her direct connections to Aggieland, Bre was not always sure she wanted to stay home for her collegiate career.
Bre had a decorated softball career at College Station High School. The school’s softball team was ranked among the top 100 programs in the country during her four years as a varsity athlete, peaking at No. 9 during her senior season. She also spent all four years on the school’s varsity volleyball team and showed cattle in Houston, Austin and San Antonio.
The recruiting rules at the time allowed for Bre to begin receiving collegiate attention at a very young age; she was hearing whispers as early as her seventh grade year. Like any 13-year-old would, she focused on the flashy uniforms and gigantic facilities.
However, after several unofficial visits, she said she began to look toward the long-term benefits of attending a college that also fit her academic and social interests.
“I started to mature more in my decision and think about what I wanted to do in school and in life after college,” Bre said. “My parents weren’t going to let me commit in middle school, and I think that kept me from making a really premature decision.”
When it finally came time to choose where she would spend the next four years, Bre had many options from which to choose. She had received offers from all across the Southeastern Conference, as well as teams like Washington, Oregon and Florida State.
Although Bre’s parents are fond of the College Station area, they did not want her hometown to play a factor in where she decided to commit.
Bre’s parents said they wanted to make sure she knew it was her decision and that she had their support regardless.
“It actually surprised us that she chose A&M because of the real interest elsewhere in other top programs,” Ty and Kesha Warren said in an email to The Battalion. “Proximity was the only real parental concern, but that still had no real impact on her decision. We would travel anywhere for our kids.”
Despite the nationwide interest, Bre ultimately decided to stay home and committed to be an Aggie.
Although her family emphasized to her they did not want to factor into her decision, she ultimately decided to stay close to home for them. A self-admitted homebody, Bre chose to stay in close proximity to her parents and her younger sisters.
Now that she has completed her freshman season, she is focused on improving her game and continuing to flourish in the ever-competitive SEC.
The team has downsized compared to the rosters of previous seasons, sporting just 18 players. This small size will allow a higher percentage of players to see significant action, and Evans suspects this will help to form a more cohesive and productive squad. The team will also have more opportunities to build chemistry off the field, as the 2020-2021 season was marred by tight protocols due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bre said she learned a lot about herself as a player during her freshman year. Along with the physical intensity of SEC-level competition, she also had to learn the confidence and mental toughness that is needed to be a collegiate athlete. She has now cleared those early hurdles, and thus her goals are more team oriented.
“We’re worried about building each other up as a team,” Bre said. “I’m focused on working to get everybody close together, especially the new freshmen. Last year, we had [the pandemic], so this year, it’s more important to learn how people are on and off the field. We didn’t really have that team bond outside of travel, so I think having that this year will make us stronger.”
All the pieces are falling into place for a big season from A&M softball, and Bre will undoubtedly be a big part of the program this season. Regardless of what happens going forward, her parents said they will look back at that first home run as the sign of something special being built.
“It has been fun to witness and look forward to her growth,” the Warrens said in the email. “We are excited about what we have seen so far. She is a humble, fun-loving kid, and our proud moments are truly unconditional.”

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