Senior Spotlight: Best friends at Caruthers plan to attend college together

The Blue Raiders will both be attending West Hills College in Lemore next year.
Meet JJ Hopkins and Alyssa Salinas.

The pair have been best friends since the 7th grade and they both are multi-sport athletes.

"Alyssa is kind of like the clown of the team, she keeps everyone easy-going, JJ is more of a serious person you can get a smile out of her here and there but nothing more than that," says Jeff Day, head softball coach.

"I play first base and she plays third, so she would get the ball hit to her she would make a good throw to me and I'd be like hey JJ air high five across the field," says Alyssa.

In addition to softball, they both played soccer.

Jeff Day is also an assistant coach on the pitch. He said during the soccer season the trio always talked about getting back on the softball field.

The Blue Raiders fell 5-4 in the Valley Championship one year ago.

"Ever since that loss in Valley last year, we've waited a whole year to come back and play to try and get there again," says JJ.

"It leaves a dry feeling in the stomach, we had a very good team, a good enough team to probably take it this year."

Caruthers was only able to get one game in before their season was cancelled. They beat Mendota 24-1 on their home field.

"I guess that is going to be the 1-0 season, so we'll be known for a 1-0 season this year," says coach Day.

Alyssa also played volleyball while JJ was a talented tennis player going 19-0 in singles. Being a three-sport athlete has taught them about time management.

"I show animals too, so I'm constantly going from showmanship practice, to school, I'm always on the go," says Alyssa.

"It can be challenging at times, you can get lazy after getting home from practice or switching from sports," says JJ.

The Blue Raiders will both be attending West Hills College in Lemore next year, they plan to take the same classes together. Alyssa is going to play for the softball team, and JJ can't wait to cheer her on.

Even though they are no longer teammates in high school they've created a lasting bond.

"I always felt like I had someone in the sport with me to be goofy with, our moments on the field would make us bond better as friends," says JJ.

"Making memories with her has been my favorite thing," says Alyssa.

Alyssa plans to be an elementary school teacher while JJ wants to become a dental hygenist.
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