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They say love comes at unexpected moments; it certainly did for Savanna Wojtanowski and Amy Balich. Though they were both Division I athletes in college, each played a different sport — soccer and softball respectively — for Michigan State and Ohio State Universities. However, despite their slim odds of ever meeting, fate aligned in their favor during one of Balich’s softball games.
“The way the facilities are set up in Michigan State involves a lot of interaction between visiting teams and Michigan State,” Wojtanowski said.
So it was during an Ohio State away game at MSU’s campus that Wojtanowski met Balich met. Wojtanowski struck up a conversation about a tattoo Balich had on the inside of her arm, and before long the two began to message each other on Instagram. Soon after, the two became a couple. A year-and-a-half in, Wojtanowski knew she had met the one and made plans to propose.
“I got things started and planning in June of 2018 and started to think, ‘OK, I definitely want to propose and how can I do it?’ I got the ring in July and I thought it would be an amazing opportunity [to propose] when Ohio State does a Charity Classic every year in the fall,” she said.
It’s tradition after every game for the teammates to sing “Carmen Ohio” toward the stands, so, with permission from the coaches, Wojtanowski made her way up to the pitcher’s mound during the song and surprised Balich.
“And that’s how I proposed,” she said, “in front of all of her teammates. And her family was present and my family was present.”
After that perfect fall moment, the two set upon planning the ideal ceremony. The fiances have set upon a date in summer of 2021 and have plans to marry at Willowbrook Mill in Northport.
“We wanted a barn/rustic theme and Willowbrook Mill was perfect for us. So we’re going to do charcoal and burgundy as our colors, and we want to do very casual in the sense of barbecue is our catering but we have a black tie dress code,” Wojtanowski said. “So we want classy but also very rustic, because we’re both very laid back people. Our ceremony is going to take place on the beach in Northport, Michigan, and then we’ll finish up at our venue.”
And before the 2021 deadline rolls around, the couple is eager to start building their lives together — literally.
“We purchased, this past summer, 2.7 acres of property in Traverse City to build a house on,” Wojtanowski said.
Wojtanowski graduated in 2017, while Balich finished school this past December. Because of that, until very recently, the fiances had a long-distance relationship. Still, Wojtanowski said it was the traveling that they did together during that time that brought them together.
“It’s just the excitement of it all. It’s the stuff you dream about as a kid growing up, like what kind of dress you’re going to wear, what your wedding is going to look like and it’s all coming to reality for the first time ever,” Balich said.
“I loved being able to support Amy through her softball career. Unfortunately, I was a senior when we met, so she didn’t get the opportunity to do so, but I used to have a job where I worked from home primarily, so I never missed a weekend, and I traveled every weekend all over the country for her softball,” she said. “So we visited a multitude of places. We love traveling, so we’ve been to a few countries together, [and had] quite a few states together.”
Balich agreed. When asked if she’s had a favorite moment leading up to the big day, she said she’s embraced the whole experience.
“It’s just the excitement of it all. It’s the stuff you dream about as a kid growing up, like what kind of dress you’re going to wear, what your wedding is going to look like and it’s all coming to reality for the first time ever,” Balich said. “I don’t think I ever had a favorite part, I think our whole experience together is just super exciting and a lot of fun.”