- Name Kaleigh Rafter
- Hometown Guelph, Ont.
- Date of Birth August 18, 1986
- Number 55
- Primary Position Catcher
- Bats Right
- Throws Right
One of the longest tenured players on the Women’s National Team, Kaleigh Rafter has been part of Team Canada since 2007. Since competing at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, the Guelph, Ontario native has amassed an impressive international resume. At the WBSC Women’s Softball World Championship she has competed for Canada in every event since 2010, and was part of bronze medal winning teams in 2010, 2016 and 2018. She has also competed in the last four Pan American Games, taking home Silver medals in 2007, 2011 and 2019 and Gold at the 2015 competition in Toronto.
Rafter began her collegiate playing career at Detroit Mercy in 2006. Through her three-year career with the Titans, she was twice named Horizon League Player of the Year and an All-Region selection by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA). Following her junior season at Detroit, Rafter sat out the season to compete with the National Team in 2008. Following the 2008 Olympics, Rafter finished her collegiate playing career at Florida State where she helped lead the Seminoles to a 44-16 record and an NCAA Regional appearance. Rafter holds both a Bachelor’s of Science in Criminology and Master’s Degrees in Criminology and Sports Management from Florida State University.
Rafter played two seasons professionally for Honda in the Japanese Professional Softball League, and played with the Canadian Wild of Southern Illinois in the National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) League in 2019 where she appeared in 19 games while rehabbing an injury. She was a key contributor both behind and at the plate at the 2019 WBSC Americas Qualifier, hitting .462 with 3 homeruns and 9 RBIs and delivering the walk-off home run in an Olympic berth clinching moment as Canada earned its spot for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
Since 2016, Rafter has been an assistant coach with the University of Virginia softball team where she served as the team’s offensive coordinator and oversaw the catchers and infielders.
What Minor Softball Association did you grow up playing in? Guelph Gators, Brampton Blazers
What’s your favourite food? Rice
What’s your favourite book? Non-Fiction: Man’s search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. Fiction: Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
What’s the best movie you’ve ever watched? Shawshank Redemption
What’s your favourite place that softball has taken you? Australia and Rio De Janerio
What are your future aspirations? Continue in the game of softball either coaching or in administration.
If you could spend an hour with anyone in the world, living or dead, who would it be? Geno Auriemma. Think he will go down as one of the greatest coaches and motivators of all time.
2007 Pan American Games - Silver
2010 WBSC World Championship - Bronze
2011 Pan American Games - Silver
2015 Pan American Games - Gold
2016 WBSC World Championship - Bronze
2017 WBSC Americas Qualifier - Bronze
2018 WBSC World Championship - Bronze
2019 Pan American Games - Silver