With 25 games won, including an eight-game win streak and a triumph over Southern Indiana, the Bobcats Softball team has started its 2019 season off with a bang.
“Everyone’s just really settling into their roles and really starting to excel,” said head coach Jamie Grodecki.
In addition to their roles on the field, a few players, namely Caroline Snider and Hayley Howell, have assumed leadership roles within the team.
Snider is a senior mass communication major and outfielder who has been playing for the Bobcats since her freshman year in 2015. She currently is at the top of the Peach Belt Conference leaderboard for her .442 batting average and 21 stolen bases. She also is No. 3 for the Bobcats in RBIs.
“Caroline Snider has been a great leader for us,” Howell said. “Her presence is just so good for our team, and she’s just led us so well.”
Unfortunately, Snider broke her ankle in a recent game and is unable to compete for the rest of the season. However, her teammates and coach have no doubts that she will continue to be a leading and driving presence for the team, and they are extremely proud of her performance this season.
“Somebody’s got to step up and fill that leadership position, but I think we’re all ready and up for the challenge,” said teammate Rebecca Lawrence.
Lawrence, herself, has been doing well this season and currently leads the team in ERA, strikeouts and wins.
Also stepping up to the plate this year is Howell, a sophomore pitcher. She has been playing for the Bobcats since her freshman year and currently holds the most RBIs in the PBC.
This year’s roster is exceptionally young with 10 freshman. However, Howell said they have shown great skill and the ability to learn and adapt quickly.
“I think that the fact that we’re younger, we have a lot of people learning, but I think that they are doing a great job at learning, and our leaders are doing a great job of teaching them,” Howell said.
Of the new freshman, many have shown improvement playing in their first college season. Grodecki named Jessie Barre as her most improved and player to watch.
“I didn’t know what my expectations were,” Grodecki said. “I just knew what her work ethic was, so I think she has put in the work and seen the results.”
Though these stand-out players have done an exceptional job in the first half of this season, Grodecki attributes the team’s success to their ability to give and take and let everyone get a chance to win.
Working as a tightly knit group has made it so nothing holds them back from advancing, and this is what Grodecki said will keep them successful in the second half of the season.
Photos courtesy of GC Sports Information