When Carlie Sanders steps up to the plate, this is how she approaches each at-bat.
“I usually think about jumping early on the count," said Sanders. "Then I try to go for a gap shot and then play it on from there.”
Hitting a home run may not be her top priority, but boy is she ever good at it.
“She loves to get dirty," added Hillsboro softball coach Kevin Lucas. "She loves diving for balls, sliding, and hitting’s been the one thing that she really takes serious.”
Sanders showed the entire state of Missouri how serious she is when it comes to that part of her game on September 18 against Jefferson. The senior shortstop blasted three home runs for her 15th, 16th, and 17th of the year, and number 17 put her in the record books.
“At first I didn’t think about it," said Sanders. "I didn’t really know what the goal was and then when I realized I got close to it, it became more like a goal to beat it and then just keep going.”
“It was pretty amazing when it did happen," added Lucas. "I mean because all the girls were excited about it and then when she came around (third base) just the smile on her face and stuff it was joy.”
Hitting number 17 means she holds the single-season record for home runs in the state, but the Hawks have played 10 games since then, and Sander’s number now stands at 21, which ranks 6th in the entire nation. She admits, that feeling of running around the bases never gets old.
“To see my first base coach just give me a high-five, said Sanders. "I smile all the way around. Talking to coach Lucas going around third. It’s just really exciting going in to your teammates.”
Boston College is getting one special player in Carlie Sanders, our 5 On Your Side Sports Athlete of the Week.