By Will Chamblee | Sports Writer
For her standard, senior first baseman Goose McGlaun had a down year in 2020. The power hitter who has the sixth most career home runs in Baylor softball history sported a .273 batting average and only hit a single home run before COVID-19 abruptly ended Baylor’s season.
While hitting .273 on the year is good enough for most, it wasn’t a good way for McGlaun to end her career in a Baylor uniform, as the Humble native decided to exercise her extra year of eligibility to come back for a final season at Baylor.
“When we found out we could get our eligibility back, I was super excited,” McGlaun said in reference to the NCAA allowing spring sports athletes to have an extra year of eligibility due to the pandemic. “I decided I wasn’t ready for the real world yet and to play another year and finish what we started with the amazing amount of talent we have.”
So far, McGlaun has made the most of the opportunity to return for one final season. The senior has excelled, hitting a career-high .342 batting average and already knocking in 15 RBIs in just 23 games so far this season. When McGlaun is hitting the ball well, Baylor wins games.
“Once you get our power hitters, like Goose and Aliyah [Binford], to start going, it’s going to be fun to watch us play,” freshman Emily Hott said earlier in the season.
Baylor has gone 14-2 in their last 16 games, and McGlaun has been a big contributor. Against No. 25 Mississippi State, McGlaun had three hits and three RBIs in four at-bats, leading the Bears to their first ranked-win of the season and kicking off the 14-2 run throughout March.
McGlaun’s success at the plate doesn’t just magically happen. McGlaun remains committed to working hard in and outside of practice and, as she says, “leaving no doubt.”
“I’ve just been working really hard and trying to leave no doubt,” McGlaun said. “Do as much as I can do in the off-season and even before and after practice, I just really to feel comfortable and confident when I go up to the plate.”
While McGlaun brings a big bat to the lineup, she always brings much-needed leadership as well. While head coach Glenn Moore said the Bears are blessed to have a talented senior class full of experience and leaders, he went out of his way to identify McGlaun as a role model for the younger players.
“Goose is first of all a leader,” Moore said. “We have pretty good leadership with this [senior] class, and she took the bull by the horns with her locker room leadership.”
McGlaun’s hitting and leadership will continue to lead the Bears as the team pursues its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2018. But regardless of the outcome of the season, McGlaun is just looking to enjoy her last year at Baylor.
“I’m just enjoying softball,” McGlaun said. “Seeing this year as my last year in a Baylor uniform has really got me in my feelings a little bit, and so I’m just trying to enjoy it as much as I can.”