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Jake Locker cheers on Huskies softball team
Huskies quarterback Jake Locker painted his loyalties on his biceps and rooted for Washington and girlfriend Lauren Greer. He also hopes to learn a little about winning.
Special to The Seattle Times
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. — Jake Locker takes a seat on the concrete steps behind the Washington rooting section with one simple play call.
"Let's get painted up," he tells Kim Stenson, outfielder Bailey Stenson's mom and the Huskies' designated colorist.
It was not hard to spot Locker when the No. 3 Huskies played Florida on Tuesday in the second game of the NCAA softball championship.
He's the one with "I [heart] #21" in purple on his right biceps and "Win it all" on the left.
Locker, who has been dating Huskies right fielder Lauren Greer for about a year, arrived Friday for the 1-0 victory over Arizona State and said he was here for the duration.
"I had a flight out on Sunday, but once I got here I couldn't leave," said Locker, the Huskies' quarterback.
"I called the [football] coaches and said, 'Hey, if I could stay, I'd love to.' It's something I can't leave right now. It's too much fun. It's exciting. It's something I want to go through."
Locker carried a No. 21 jersey with him and waved it when Greer came to the plate.
Locker, a junior from Ferndale, will be in his third year as a Huskies starter this fall, and he hopes he can translate the winning feeling to the football field.
"It's something at this level of play I haven't experienced yet," Locker said. "Being able to be here, obviously, it's something that you can't describe until you've been part of it. Obviously we're not playing, but to be a fan and root for your team is a special thing.
"To experience this atmosphere, the support and the camaraderie around the team is a neat experience. And, I'm not going to lie, I'd love to be a part of. It's something I'm going to strive for in the years I have left."
Locker wasn't the only football player in the crowd rooting for Washington. Manu Tuiasosopo, a former Seahawks defensive tackle whose daughter Ashley is a sophomore for the Huskies, was also in the bleachers.
He said he has received text messages from Marques and Zach Tuiasosopo during the series.
When Manu Tuiasosopo asked his daughter the difference in the team this year, she had a two-word reply: "The leadership."
That's a reference to pitcher Danielle Lawrie, the Series MVP and national player of the year in softball.
"She's a warrior," Tuiasosopo said.
Isaiah Stanback, a former UW quarterback, drove from Dallas to watch Washington's 8-0 victory Monday in the first game of the series, but he had to return to Dallas that night. Stanback plays for the NFL's Cowboys as a receiver and kickoff returner.
Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company
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