They’ve still got one season left to play for Daviess County High School, but Cameron Hamilton and Hannah Clark both already know where they’ll be continuing their softball careers.
Hamilton will play at Kentucky Wesleyan College next year, while Clark will attend Lincoln University (Missouri). Head coach John Biggs said the duo has come a long way since joining the DC program, and their effort is what helped them advance to the next level.
“When Cam and Hannah came to us as middle schoolers, they were bright-eyed and all excited to be a part of our program,” he said. “But there wasn’t anything going across their forehead saying they were destined to play college ball. These two had to work extremely hard to get where they are. It’s a testament to their family and that support system.”
Both players are part of the pitching rotation, and Biggs said he’s hoping they’ll combine for a versatile approach on the mound.
“Hannah is more of a power pitcher,” Biggs said. “With those two individuals on the mound for us — with Cameron hitting her spots and increasing her speed, and with Hannah as a power pitcher developing some off speed pitches — it’s going to be a good little 1-2 punch for us.”
When the girls were freshmen, the Lady Panthers finished the season 35-9 (14-0 against the 3rd Region), falling in the state tournament to eventual runner-up McCracken County. The last two seasons weren’t quite as fruitful — 44-20 overall — but Biggs expects Hamilton and Clark to lead the team to more success before moving on to college.
“We’ve still got another season,” he said. “We’re hoping they can lead us. We’ve got some high expectations this year, and they’re going to be one of the foundations of our program.”
Clark said her first visit with the Blue Tigers went well, and she was sold on the team early on.
“I went there originally to practice and work out with the team,” she said. “I toured the campus and loved it. I chose it because the team and coach was so inviting.”
Clark said so far, the best parts of her career have been finding new friends and going to new places. As she moves on to college, Clark knows the competition will step up but she feels prepared.
“It will definitely be a change considering the workouts and things, but I think I can handle it,” she said.
For Hamilton, staying local to home played a big part in choosing Kentucky Wesleyan, and her visit with the Lady Panthers was all it took to make a decision.
“I wanted to stay close to home,” Hamilton said. “Whenever I went there on a visit they made me feel very welcome.”
Similar to Clark, Hamilton said the atmosphere around the sport has been the best aspect of playing softball.
“I just love the game in general,” she said. “It’s so fun to be able to find so many friends even outside the state of Kentucky. Whenever you join a team, it’s like your family.”
While their skills certainly played a big part in recruiting, Biggs said the personalities are just as big a factor for the girls in their success.
“The biggest thing they’ve done is off-the-field stuff,” he said. “They are two really good young ladies and they’ve done whatever I’ve asked them to. They’ve developed into two good leaders and very selfless players.”
Biggs said their contributions all around will be missed once they leave Daviess County behind.
“Daviess County softball is a better program because of them,” he said. “The two colleges that are going to get them are going to be better. The people that they touch outside of softball are going to be better.”
During Biggs’ introduction of his players at the group signing ceremony, he gave advice to all the athletes.
“As you go on in this journey, you’re not on your own,” he said. “There’s going to be some times when it’s going to be tough and you’re going to want to quit, and you’ve got to look back and lean on that support system that got you where you are today.”