Athlete of the Week: Connie Filley

We've had more than a few unique Athletes of the Week over the years, from dancers to dart throwers, pool players to hill climbers, but perhaps none more unique than Newcastle, Wyoming's Connie Filley.
Taylor Kauffman shows us why.

Connie Filley has been pitching horseshoes since the 80s.

Connie says, 'I'm kind of competitive, and I really like the competition.
My pitching became good quite fast.'

The pitching came easy - but like Billie Jean King, Connie ran into some other struggles in her early career.

Connie says, 'I wasn't pitching with just women, I was throwing against men also, and that wasn't received sometimes too well. So, I had to focus on concentrating on the game, and not thinking about maybe the comments that were being made by a competitor or whoever. That in itself was a little bit difficult.'

Connie says, 'My husband was always there to support me. Never once did he waiver.'

In 1989 she won her first State Championship. And the State titles kept coming. Before she know it she had 25, and she was one championship away from a world record. And her husband, the man who taught her to pitch, wasn't going to be able to see it.

Connie says, 'My husband actually passed her away a little over ten months ago, so very much so, he was like my best support system ever. I've since then enlisted a coach whose since then put the '26' down there, because that was when I was going for my 26th state win.'

This month she beat out last year's state champion for her 26th title, and the world record.

Connie says, 'It was really awesome. My sister was there, whose been with me through all of my tournaments practically. She was crying and I said, "Stop."'

After Connie reached her goal of 26 she had to set another.

Connie says, 'And I decided if I can do 26, I'm going to shoot for 30. And then you know, if everything works out what the heck, we can go for more than that.'

Congratulations to Connie Filley for being this week's Powerade Athlete of the Week. For Black Hills Fox Sports, I'm Taylor Kauffman.>