Whirl­wind time for Kingston grad­u­ate

For­mer Kingston star Charlise Cas­tro en­joy­ing life as an en­tre­pre­neur and fi­ancé to Hous­ton Astros’ World Se­ries Most Valu­able Player Ge­orge Springer

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - FRONT PAGE - By Mike Stribl mstribl@free­manon­line.com @MStribl on Twit­ter

It’s been a whirl­wind year for Charlise Cas­tro, who is hop­ing to take a break next month.

Ob­vi­ously it won’t be a long break.

Kingston High’s three-sport stand­out, who grad­u­ated in 2010, has had a hec­tic 2017 capped by a wild fall that had her fi­ancé Ge­orge Springer of the Hous­ton Astros named World Se­ries Most Valu­able Player.

“Hav­ing him be the MVP, that was in­sane,” said Cas­tro in a tele­phone in­ter­view from her home in Hous­ton. “The day af­ter, we all par­tied on the rooftop of the RitzCarl­ton.

“The next morn­ing, we flew to Orlando to Dis­ney World; New York for Satur­day Night Live; then back to Texas. We looked at each other and went, “Wow! We’ve been up 24 hours!’

“And we still went to a Tex­ans game and a Rock­ets game and he was talk­ing to Sports Il­lus­trated. It’s been non-stop.”

S.I. had pre­dicted this back in June 2014 with Springer on the cover and declar­ing “Your 2017 World Se­ries Champs.”

At that point, Cas­tro had been

talk­ing to, but had not yet met Springer. She played in­ter­na­tional softball with Springer’s sis­ter, Ni­cole, for two years.

“His sis­ter men­tioned him a few times. I had met the rest of the fam­ily, but not him,” Cas­tro noted. “This was in 2014. He was still in the mi­nor leagues.”

Ge­orge, who was called up to the ma­jors that sea­son, had seen pic­tures of her with his sis­ter and was hooked.

“He ran­domly texted me out of the blue, say­ing that he was in­ter­ested in me. His sis­ter said, “He’s a lit­tle shy. You’re go­ing to have to call him.’” Cas­tro laughed. “We texted and talked ev­ery day for five or six months.”

Springer was on the dis­abled list af­ter suf­fer­ing a quad sprain in July, but trav­eled with the team when it played at Yan­kee Sta­dium Aug. 19-21 that year.

“I drove down to New York City and we met and we kept in con­tact,” said Cas­tro. “It hon­estly was love at first sight.”

Cas­tro, who grad­u­ated from the Univer­sity at Al­bany with a bach­e­lor’s de­gree in com­mu­ni­ca­tions then went on to get her master’s in busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tion at the Col­lege of St. Rose, moved to Hous­ton in ‘15.

“I’ve been down here three years and I had made some con­tacts. I had a good re­sume built up,” she said. “A nor­mal 9-to-5 didn’t work out with my sched­ule.

“I had a busi­ness de­gree. Why not start a com­pany of my own? Ob­vi­ously with my ath­letic back­ground, I could be a men­tor of some sort and help peo­ple live a bet­ter life, but still be able to travel. Have some­thing of my own.”

Cas­tro has be­come a A Na­tional Academy of Sports Medicine-ap­proved Cer­ti­fied Per­sonal Trainer and has a blog and web­site called Cas­troFit.com with the slo­gan, “Sore Today,

Strong To­mor­row.” “My plate is full but, un­der­stand, I wouldn’t change a thing,” she said.

“Ge­orge projects us as a power cou­ple. His stand­ing has im­proved 10 times,” said Cas­tro. A lo­cal TV sta­tion ranked the two among eight Hous­ton power cou­ples, that in­cluded Astros team­mate Justin Ver­lan­der and model Kate Upton, and for­mer Pres­i­dent Ge­orge H.W. Bush and wife, Bar­bara.

“It’s crazy to think about this. It’s been a great ex­pe­ri­ence for both of us,” Cas­tro re­marked. “We’re learn­ing and we’re grow­ing.”

Springer pro­posed last De­cem­ber while va­ca­tion­ing in Mex­ico, writ­ing “Will You Marry Me?” in the sand. Cas­tro is work­ing with a wed­ding plan­ner for the Jan. 20 nup­tials, which will be at an undis­closed lo­ca­tion. She only con­firmed that it is a “des­ti­na­tion wed­ding.”

Cas­tro (an All-Star softball, bas­ket­ball and vol­ley­ball player at Kingston be­fore be­com­ing a stand­out softball player at Al­bany) and Springer (a three-sport star at Avon Old Farms, Connecticut be­fore stand­out at UConn) find time to work out to­gether.

“I’ll throw him some bat­ting prac­tice and we play one-on-one bas­ket­ball to get warmed up,” she said. A power hit­ter, she’ll give him tips. “He will take my ad­vice. He re­spects my opin­ion.”

Cas­tro was with Springer in Cal­i­for­nia on the Astros’ west coast trip when Hur­ri­cane Har­vey hit Hous­ton in Septem­ber.

“I’m thank­ful to have gone with Ge­orge on that trip. From the se­cu­rity cam­eras on our phones, you can see the wa­ter re­ally sat­u­rate the back yard,” she said.

A nearby river rose, block­ing the high­way lead­ing to their home.

“The river did not over­flow into the de­vel­op­ment or get into the house,” she re­ported. “We stayed at a friend’s house un­til we could back in.”

As a pre­cau­tion, Cas­tro had her brother An­dre move some of their ef­fects to the sec­ond floor.

In 2012, Cas­tro played for the Puerto Ri­can na­tional team com­pet­ing in the World Cup of Softball in Oklahoma City. She con­tacted her for­mer play­ers af­ter Hur­ri­cane Irma struck Puerto Rico.

“I reached out to them, but they live in the states now, so they were okay,” she said. Springer’s cousin was on the is­land.

“He fi­nally had cell ser­vice,” she said. “We didn’t hear from him for a few days.

“I’m hop­ing to get over there. We’ve sent over food and wa­ter. I def­i­nitely like to get more hands on. My prayers go out to them,” she added.

Cas­tro en­tered the year as a bride-to-be.

She’s seen her busi­ness thrive and had a front-row seat as the Astros bat­tled their way to a World cham­pi­onship where her fu­ture husband be­came the MVP. Then came the hec­tic sched­ule that comes with that honor.

Oh, and throw in a hur­ri­cane.

“It’s in­sane the highs and the lows of this year,” the fu­ture Mrs. Springer said. “I’m def­i­nitely look­ing for­ward to what next year brings.”

STEVEN GRANT/GRANTFOTO.COM PHOTO

Kingston High grad­u­ate Charlise Cas­tro and fi­ancé Ge­orge Springer of the Hous­ton Astros at­tend a re­cent NBA game in Hous­ton.

STEVEN GRANT/GRANTFOTO.COM PHOTO

Charlise Cas­tro is a cer­ti­fied per­sonal trainer.

FREE­MAN FILE PHOTO

Charlise Cas­tro as a catcher with Kingston High in 2010.

STEVEN GRANT/GRANTFOTO.COM PHOTO

Charlise Cas­tro and fi­ancé Ge­orge Springer cel­e­brate af­ter the Astros’ vic­tory over the Yan­kees in last month’s Game 7 of the Amer­i­can League Cham­pi­onship Se­ries.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.