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By Mike Beas

An assortment of common threads were woven into the 82-13 record compiled by Tri-West softball over the last three seasons.

Rest assured, Kendall Williams is one of them.

“She brought life,” said Bruins coach Mike Miller. “Kendall is the one who always had a smile on her face, and was always the one to pump everyone up. It’s huge to have someone who is always upbeat.

“And, obviously, she’s a pretty good softball player, too. We’re going to miss her.”

A recent Tri-West graduate, Williams’ adaptability benefitted the Bruins, who achieved a gaudy 40-2 mark against Sagamore Conference opponents during her time in the program.

Oh, and there were those consecutive state runner-up finishes.

Williams, the team’s starting catcher, helped lead Tri-West to the Class 3A state championship game at Purdue’s Bittinger Stadium on June 9, finishing the season with a .388 batting average, four home runs, three triples and 27 runs batted in.

She had one of her team’s six hits in a 4-2 loss to New Prairie in the title contest.

Kendall Williams (Submitted photo)

As a junior, Williams played first base during the program’s 29-3 run to West Lafayette, a season that concluded with a rain-delayed 1-0 loss in nine innings to South Bend St. Joseph in the 3A championship game.

Tri-West’s 2022 postseason journey included Williams delivering home runs in consecutive 3-0 semi-state victories over Pike Central and Corydon Central. It was here, at Brown County, where Williams completed her day with four hits in six at-bats.

An excellent student, as well (3.9 grade-point average at Tri-West), Williams did a Q&A with ICON:
Q: Not many high school athletes can say they played in two straight state championship games. Looking back, what was that experience like?

A: It was really fun to get to go on a run like that and get to play teams we normally don’t get to play. Having been there (in 2022) and knowing what to expect, it took a lot of pressure off of us this season.

Q: Have you always been a catcher, and how did that happen?

A: I would say I’ve been catching since I was 7. I’ve played corner infield, and played a lot of first base last season, but it’s mostly been catcher this season. I would say catcher is my favorite position because I’ve just been there the most.

Q: Did you play any other sports in your time at Tri-West?

A: I played soccer my junior and senior years as a goalkeeper. You would be surprised how much soccer and softball overlap in terms of the skills you need.

Q: Now that you’ve graduated from Tri-West High School, what are your plans?

A: I’m going to Ball State University, and I’m going to major in criminal justice. I want to be a lawyer. I’ve always liked crime TV, and I think this would be a good way to help people. I think it’s time for me to take a step back from softball.

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