From both at the plate and in the circle, senior Lauren Seale (Madison, Va./Madison County) has helped the EMU softball team to the hottest start in program history.
Lauren led the offensive charge for the Royals last week, hitting .583 with nine runs and 12 RBIs in four games. She also hit three homeruns in just 12 at-bats.
In an 11-3 victory over Mary Washington, Seale had three hits in three at-bats, highlighted by a three-run homerun in the second inning and a walk off homerun in the sixth to put the mercy rule into effect. She totaled six RBIs and three runs in the game and also threw a complete game win in the circle.
After the 12-0 start for EMU, Lauren was hitting .425 with 18 RBIS in 40 at-bats. Her three homeruns on the year slates her at a tie for third in the ODAC.
When asked about her hot start, Lauren noted the hard work she has put in before the season as a large part to her early success.
“During the offseason, I have worked with multiple drills to improve my hitting and pitching,” Lauren said.
The offseason work has paid off from the circle as well, with Lauren currently sporting a 5-1 record and an ERA of 3.80. She also has 39 strikeouts in 31.1 innings pitched, putting her at seventh in the ODAC thus far.
The Royals have showed their dominance early on with the longest win streak to start the season in the softball team’s 38-year history. Lauren notices a certain aura surrounding the Royals that will help them down the stretch.
“The identity of the team is being there for one another on and off the field. We have bonded and we play really well together,” Lauren said. “I feel we have stepped up as a team and everyone on the team plays an important role. We never know when we are going to need someone to go into the game and we have a lot of confidence in every player on this team when they step on the field.”
Lauren plans to graduate in the fall of 2017, after three-and-a-half years at EMU, making this season her last as a collegiate softball player.
“I have told myself this is my last season of softball and I wanted to go out on a good note and be there for my team,” Lauren said.
With the majority of conference play still ahead for the Royals, Lauren looks to turn the impressive start for her team into another deep run into the conference tournament. The women lost in the championship of the tourney last spring.
“The ultimate goal of this season is to take it one game at a time and win the ODAC’s,” Lauren said.
Lauren will get a degree in Elementary Education and plans to teach in her hometown of Madison, Va.
--- by Jake Brown, Sports Information Intern