By Adam Lignell
Despite a few snags early on, the softball team has been taking clear victories in its latest games of the season.
Head coach Aubree Brattin explained why she thinks the team has been improving lately.
“We don’t really worry about what the other teams are doing,” Brattin said. “Win or lose, if we can do the things that control what we do and how we play, we’re successful out on the field.”
After the recent 14-0 and 12-0 wins at Fort Scott Community College, Brattin emphasized where she wants the girls to keep their focus.
“If we would come with the mentality that we brought for Fort Scott to every game in our conference, we would be able to handle the games like we did in Fort Scott,” she said.
With that in mind, Brattin also said she thinks that enjoyment and love for the game play a huge role.
“Just seeing the girls have fun, laughing at practice, enjoying what they’re learning,” she said. “I think it’s important for them to love the game of softball, love what they’re doing and to understand why they’re doing it.”
Even with a few changes with last year’s roster and coaching situation, their new swinging style, defense and positioning allowed the team to play harder.
“I’m a much different coach than [the one who was here last year,]” Brattin said. “For the sophomores, they had to learn my philosophy of coaching.”
A torn ACL didn’t stop outfielder Taylor Allen, who credits the injury with helping make her stronger in this season.
“It’s improved me to always believe in myself, have confidence, a good mindset on and off the field, and to be a leader,” Allen said. “It’s made me who I am, and I have my team to back me up.”
Allen said her goals are both on and off the field.
“I would either pursue softball again here this year or somewhere else,” Allen said. “I’d get a degree, finish out school and keep my head up high.
Allen hasn’t forgotten about the team’s goals, either.
“I think our team is definitely capable of going to nationals and winning it,” Allen said. “I set high standards for our team, and I know we can win this.”
Karla Wooten, mother of third baseman Mataya Wooten explained why she attends every softball game this season.
“They have a good program here,” Wooten said. “It’s important to the girls, they like having the support. You do better whenever you have people watching you that care for the team.”
Contact Adam Lignell, staff reporter, at firstname.lastname@example.org.