Heartland Hawks 2013 Softball Team
04/24/2013 - Heartland Softball moves to number 5 the NJCAA Softball Polls
03/19/2013 - Christina Beam earned NJCAA Player of the week honors.
01/20/2013 - See news story on former Hawk, Burge Binges on Homework and Homers
01/24/2013 - Heartland Softball is ranked in the top 10 in the NJCAA Softball Polls
12/4/2012 - Heartland sophomore, Beth Wilson, has committed to continue her softball career at Kansas University next season. Kansas Softball Adds Dominant Pitcher
10/16/2012 - The Columbia Daily Tribune has a story on Heartland Hawk Hayden Filson
As the Heartland Community College softball team looks to the upcoming 2013 season, expectations are running high and the sky is the limit. A team that was never ranked outside the top six in the nation during their 2012 campaign returns 11 players to its roster, eight of whom will be considered returning starters.
Heartland players will test themselves early and often during the fall portion of their schedule. After a couple of tune-up tournaments against other junior colleges and some NAIA competition, the Lady Hawks will play the other eight competition dates against NCAA Division I opponents. “We played competitively against most of the big schools last year,” says head coach John Bassett, who enters his third season with a combined 96-36 record while at the helm of the softball program. “Last year we had 16 freshmen on the field, we made several mental mistakes and I think we were even a bit intimidated. This year, we have a returning pitcher in Beth Wilson who certainly won’t be intimidated during our competitions. She can play right at their level, and I think we have several returning and new players who can do well at that level of competition. It will be fun to see.”
Heartland plays the likes of Illinois State, Purdue, Missouri, Wisconsin and Northwestern – no small task for a group of 17–18 year-olds as they match up against lineups consisting of teams battle-tested against the best collegiate softball players in the country, many of whom are in their 20s. Last year’s fall season highlights included a tight and hard-fought 1–0 victory over the Wisconsin Badgers.
Beth Wilson leads a pitching corps that is expected to be tough this season. Wilson posted a 27-7 record last season, striking out 232 while allowing only 126 hits in 192+ innings. Kelsie Kuhlmann returns and looks to be in the mix as a crafty specialist who utilizes her superior movement. Heartland also will return a dynamic duo at the top of their lineup. Kate Mayes and Lyndsay Stevens bring back a combined 85 stolen bases to the Hawks. That lofty number could have been higher if both had not missed time with injuries.
In the last two years, the Hawks have hit 116 home runs. They’ll look for sophomore Chelsea Anderson and newcomer Ashli King to provide the muscle in the middle of their order this season. Kelsey Lowry brings speed and Melissa Jagodzinski will bring an uncanny ability to reach base back to the Hawks’ outfield. Amanda Cain will be the only returning catcher to the team and will be looked to provide leadership and groom the group to be ready to compete at the collegiate level. Christina Beam and Mackenzie Fox join Stevens and Anderson as returning sophomores on the infield. They will be counted on to be a part of what is shaping up to be one of Hawks' finest offensive lineups.
*All Hawk softball home games will be played on campus at The Corn Crib, unless otherwise stated on the schedule page. The stadium is east of Heartland's main campus, Corn Crib, 1000 West Raab Road, Normal, IL.