Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Being the youngest of four siblings, Nicole Keefe had some big shoes to fill being the 4th Seton Catholic Central Saint in her family.
"It's hard at times because they're so much older than me, I feel like at home I am held to that higher standard because I'm so much younger and everyone is more mature," said Keefe. "But I think its helped me grow as a person because I definitely feel like I matured faster than I had to at times but looking back at it now, I think it helped me as a person."
That has helped Keefe thrive both on and off the softball diamond during her time at Seton... But as she explains, she's driven in everything she does by her will to succeed.
"I've always just held myself to a higher standard," she said. "I've had that drive inside of me where I wanted to do well, I didn't necessarily need someone always looking over my shoulder because I've always just wanted to hold myself to a higher level."
That's probably one of the reasons why Keefe was pulled up to the varsity team back when she was in 8th grade, and then pulled up once again to help win a sectional title her freshman year.
"She's a pleasure to coach because I think she pays attention to detail," said Chris Sinicki, Seton's head coach. "She respects her teammates, she respects the coaches and that makes it very easy as a coach."
Off the field, her success doesn't stop as she had a 99 average heading into this school year, and now has a schedule littered with AP courses. But just like when she's on the diamond, her older siblings that helped set the high standard are there to cheer her on.
"They've always been so supportive, I mean my siblings, every game they can come to they are there. Even when they are out of town they make their way home to big competitions," said Keefe. "I always hear them cheering. My parents are really loud at the games, but it has helped me so much."
Living up to the expectations and then some, and that's why Nicole Keefe is this week's Academic All-Star.