After previewing Florida State softball’s super Seniors and Seniors, we look forward to Team 40’s returning junior and first group of redshirt players.
As one of two true Juniors on the roster, and the only one returning from 2022, Kalei Harding enters 2023 with 2 remaining years of eligibility. Exiting last season, she ended with ALL-ACC Second Team honors and appeared in all 61 games, starting 60. Harding provided another power bat in the lineup, batting .304 she tallied 56 hits, 46 runs, 11 doubles, 53 RBI and was one of two players to have double digit home runs, with 15. Her best game came against North Carolina, where recorded 3 hits, 2 home runs and 4 RBI.
Harding was also a force to be reckoned with defensively. With a .966 fielding percentage, she showed off an impressive arm in right field. Against Boston College she collected 14 putouts.
Even though she came in with the class of 2020, 2022 was Chloe Culp’s first full season with the program. After redshirting with an injury in 2021, Culp comes into the upcoming season as a redshirt Junior.
Mostly starting as the designated player in the lineup, Culp made 41 appearances. The .164 hitter totaled 61 at bats, where she scored 4 runs, 10 hits, 1 double, 2 home runs, 9 RBI. Coming off the bench Culp provided needed power in clutch situations.
Similar to Culp, Hallie Wacaser is coming off an injury from last season. The Redshirt Sophomore played in her first full season as a Seminole in 2022. Wacaser started 30 games and played in 46, starting as the designated hitter as well as the outfield. In her 90 at bats, she posted a .167 batting average. She recorded 6 runs, 15 hits, 3 doubles, 1 homerun and 8 RBI with 5 stolen bases.
With a bulk of the lineup from 2022 returning, these players could return to their roles for the upcoming season.
Harding should return to her position in right field, and a one of the top bats in the lineup.
During the summer of 2022, both Culp and Wacaser participated in the Florida Gulf Coast League. Wacaser had a .395 BA, 13 RBI, 2 HR, 4 doubles, 8 walks, 16 runs with in 2-2 stolen bases. Culp had a .235 batting average, 9 RBI, 2 HR, 5 doubles, 7 walks, 8 runs and a .339 OBP.
For 2023, we can expect more power from both players, who could return to the designated player role. Wacaser saw time in the outfield last season and returns to provide depth in that position.
Stay tuned for part two of the redshirt players