After a stellar 2019 season, the Pulaski County High School softball team will be returning all their players for the 2020 season. The 2019 Lady Maroons finished up with a 24-7 season record, which included a 22-game winning streak. According to Lady Maroons head coach Brad Gover, this year's team will also gain the experience of several talented middle school players.
Mississippi State University commit Riley Hull will be leading the way for the Lady Maroons this upcoming season. Hull, a junior, is the Kentucky 2020 Preseason Player Of The Year, and is a two-time All-State player. Hull won the 2019 Johnny Bench award and ranked 65th in the nation overall, along with being the 22nd ranked catcher in the nation. Hull was named All Region, All District and All County last the two years
Last season, Hull maintained a .589 batting average, scored 47 runs, and drove in 54 runs.
And if teams decide not to pitch to Hull, next up, they will have to face an even more destructive Eva Gover - who batted .490 last season, hit five homers and drove in 50 runs. Eva Gover is a 2019 All-State player and member of the Kentucky Junior All-Stars in 2019.
Gover has started at the varsity level since she was in the sixth grade, and has made the Commonwealth Journal All-County team every year since her seventh-grade year. Also, Gover has been selected All-District and All-Region five out of seven years as a Lady Maroon.
Junior Molli Nelson batted .421 last season, and scored 43 runs. Junior Dawn Wilson batted .394 and scored 13 runs. Junior Gabbie Countryman had a .371 batting average last season and drove in 24 runs. Eighth-grader Bella Ellis led the Lady Maroons last season with six home runs.
Leading the Lady Maroons on in the pitcher's circle will be junior Kaylee Strunk, who finished last season with a 23-6 record.
Strunk recorded 148 strikeouts and maintained a 2.39 ERA. Stunk was a 2019 Commonwealth Journal All-County selection. Strunk also hit five dingers and drove in 23 runs at the plate.
"I think this could be one of the most skilled Pulaski County softball teams we've ever had,"stated Lady Maroons' head coach Brad Gover. "We are going to be solid in every position on the field. We've got a lot of players that are very versatile and can play many different positions."
"We are going to have extremely good leadership along with everyone knowing what their role is," Gover added. "This team has probably more offensive threats than any other Pulaski softball team in its history. It is going to be a lot of fun coaching this group and will be an exciting year for our fans to watch as well. This team will settle for nothing less than a district championship and a regional crown."
STEVE CORNELIUS is the CJ Sports Editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @CJSportseditor.