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- Published on Thursday, 28 June 2012 10:56
New Elkette softball coach begins tenure with four-week hitting camp
Daily Elk Citian
In her transition from graduate assistant for the University of Oklahoma softball team, to Elk City High School head softball coach, Lindsay Mudgett has plenty of boxes to pack and furniture to move.
And as of Wednesday, she had future Elkette and area softball players to teach.
Mudgett, a former OU softball standout who ranks sixth at the school in career runs batted-in (158) and seventh in home runs (33), began her tenure in Elk City by kicking off her four-week hitting camp at the Elk City Softball indoor facility. For attendees, it’s a chance to learn from someone who knows plenty well how to hit a softball. For Mudgett, it’s a chance to pass on her knowledge of the game and get to know some folks from Elk City.
“I’ve done these camps before, most of the time I work with catching since that was my position, but I always kind of floated around to different areas,” Mudgett said. “It’s good to start this to get people to know me a little bit and see what I teach. It’s a good way for me to get to know people as well.”
Wednesday, the new ECHS coach taught different skills depending on each child’s age. Younger kids learned about the proper hitting stance, good hand-eye coordination, and consistency. Older players were schooled on more detailed facets like pitch selection and the mental game of hitting.
Fundamentals of hitting like going through the ball, players using their legs, and keeping balanced were emphasized through work off tees and other drills.
One thing Mudgett’s students will quickly find out is the one-on-one time they receive during the camp is aplenty.
“You’re getting your moneys worth here. The girls are going to get a lot more swings than if they were to go to a bigger clinic,” Mudgett said, noting she will have only five girls during each hour-long session. “I can see each kid with my own eyes. I won’t just be skimming, which is what you do with big groups. With this, you can really emphasize one-on-one time, and get to know the kids a lot.”
That valuable time will be spent figuring out strengths and weaknesses of each player. In a non-negative way, the weaknesses are the most important to identify, Mudgett said. Once those are pinpointed, the work begins in fixing the glitches of a player’s swing or motion.
“With big groups, you can’t get close to [that kind of involvement],” Mudgett said.
The youngest girls to signup for the camp were six years old, Mudgett said, and the oldest to sign up were 17 years old. The oldest players were from Hammon, who are without a coach for the time being and were looking for an opportunity to keep their skills sharp.
Mudgett said she is happy to work with both age groups, and is especially comfortable teaching young ones.
“I do have some little biddy girls, which is fun because I like little kids. They’re a joy to work with.”