Spence swinging away for Badgers

first_imgWisconsin junior Molly Spence was recently named the Big Ten Player of the Week after batting .529 during last weekend’s Wolfpack Classic in Reno, Nev. In the Badgers five games in the tournament, Spence blasted four home runs and 10 RBI’s.[/media-credit]Wisconsin junior Molly Spence had one of the best weekends a player can even imagine.She was awarded the Big Ten Player of the Week after her amazing performance at the Wolf Pack Softball Classic as she belted four home runs and drove in 10 runs over the weekend.On top of all of the other stats, she has hit for an astounding .529 batting average over the past five games.“[Receiving the award] is awesome,” Spence said. “It is something I never thought would happen. Especially coming from last year, it’s been a really long, hard process. But I have had the support of my coaches, my teammates and the medical staff from the beginning. Without each and every single person, I couldn’t have done it, and my teammates are crucial to that.”Over the weekend, Spence’s offense was crucial to the team. Even when she was not getting hits, she was still able to drive in runs with sacrifice flies.In their last game, Wisconsin (10-7) defeated Nevada (8-20) by a score of 7-1 while Spence blasted two home runs and drove in four runs.Spence’s play sparked the team to many victories as the Wisconsin softball team won four out of the five games they played this week.“I just played the game,” said Spence. “I don’t think there was much going through my head. Just get in the zone. Play the game like I know how. Just try to help the team out.”On top of all of the on-field accomplishments, Spence is one of the leaders in the locker room.“She gives us the kind of leadership we need as a program,” coach Yvette Healy said. “I think that the upperclassmen leadership is really important to a group as young and trying to build towards a championship as this team is.”Spence has also been one of the leaders offensively for the Badgers this year, as well as being named Offensive MVP of the team as a freshman.“It is definitely noticeable when she is not in the lineup,” Healy said. “She is a big student athlete and spends a lot of time in the weight room and just being as strong as she can be.“When she’s swinging well, she is definitely an intimidating young woman up there. Having her there really makes everyone around her better. When players are scared to pitch to her, everyone around her hits better.”Not everything has been easy for Spence, as the junior has made her return this season from an injury that sidelined her for the entire 2011 season.“It’s a continuous process,” Spence said. “I can’t say that I am completely healed, but I’m well enough to be playing.”“Molly is a special student athlete,” said Healy. “She was out all of last year injured. Even this fall and winter she has spent a lot of time rehabbing and playing through pain and injury. She is a student athlete where things haven’t come easy to her, but she is extremely talented.”Spence has shown that she is a strong person through all of the difficulties of the past year. She says the main key to her success is continuing to work hard.“I think it would have been easy for me to just give up after last year,” said Spence. “I had support from every single person in my life to continue to play, and my teammates really helped me and pushed me along the way.”She hopes to continue her hot streak this coming weekend as the team travels to California for the Gaucho Classic to play five more games.The injury has changed the perspective of the game of softball for her as well.“It’s really made me appreciate the game more,” Spence said. “Sometimes you get to the point where you don’t want to go to practice or play, but sitting out and watching my team play for a year made me want to be back on the field so much more. It has made me love the game in a whole new way.”last_img

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