The ACU softball team closed its 2014 season against the University of Incarnate Word last weekend. The series ended with the Wildcats taking the first two out of three games against the Cardinals, to finish the year 21-28 overall with a 10-10 conference record and 12-10 home record.
“It was a great way to end the season and a confidence builder for next year,” sophomore Demi McNulty said. “Leadership is critical to the success of any team. Leading by example in the classroom, during practice and game times is my idea of leadership and it is my plan to continue to help lead the team, along with Anna Jones, Cara Hoover and Emily Seidel.”
McNulty is among several teammates who will miss the seniors of this year’s team, and remembers how they came out and competed even in the last game of the season.
“They were on their game and I can speak for the rest of the girls when I say that we wanted it just as bad for them,” McNulty said. “They have provided inspiration and vision for the Wildcat softball program and we want to continue to build upon that for next season.”
The series against UIW ended with the Wildcats taking the double-header Saturday, but losing game three on Sunday.
Sophomore Cara Hoover hit her second grand slam of the season and went 2-3 with four runs batted in, in the Wildcats 9-0 game one win. Senior Lyndi Smith also hit a grand slam in game two, as she contributed two runs on three hits and four runs batted in.
“A lot of the seniors were very selfless,” said Hoover. “They would give anything for the team and they had a lot of heart. Seeing them drop to their knees after that last game was very heartbreaking because I know how much they would do anything to put on their cleats one more time.”
The Wildcats’ first year at Division I was a successful year and brings a lot of hope and excitement into the years to come.
“Closing out a season, especially knowing that we made the conference tournament our first year as Division I, is a big incentive to do better next year,” Hoover said. “With a lot of freshman coming, I think it will be a good and positive environment.”