Arizona softball: Hallie Wilson leads Wildcats to Lafayette

Jason Bartel

Without a doubt, Hallie Wilson was the MVP for the first weekend of tournament play

"Hallie Wilson is my kryptonite."

That was LSU head coach Beth Torina's thoughts on the weekend that was for Hallie Wilson.

"It's kind of hard not to pick someone but her," Mike Candrea added about Wilson being the team's MVP for Regional play. "She was good."

Just how good? Here's a look at her performances in each of the four games:

AB R H RBI BB
Boston U 4 1 1 0 0
LSU 4 2 3 6 0
@ LSU 0 0 0 0 4
LSU 3 3 3 3 1

That works out to a .636 batting average, a .750 on-base percentage, and a 1.455 slugging percentage on the weekend. Those are some pretty good numbers.

And, for the most part, her defense was huge, including the play that ended Saturday night's game against LSU. Wilson shows up on Saturday's SC Top 10 twice.

(Home run at 1:12, Defensive play at 1:57)

As Arizona's leadoff hitter, her play was exactly what this team needed to get through a tough regional, and a tough three games against LSU.

"Hallie's a pretty special player," Candrea said after Sunday's win. "She is able to slow the game down, never gets too excited, but really always has a really good approach at the plate."

In the last series of the regular season against Oregon, Wilson struggled, going 0-for-9 with 3 Ks.

"The only time I've seen her question herself was facing (Cheridan) Hawkins against Oregon," Candrea continued. "But if on a day-to-day basis, you watch her prepare in batting practice, she's always got a purpose. So it's no surprise that when it comes to gametime, she can make adjustments."

"She's a big key for us. When she started off (Sunday)'s game with a home run, I think that really feeds a lot of energy and a lot of confidence in our other hitters. When Hallie struggles, it kind of floats down."

"It was amazing," said Wilson of that home run to get Arizona started in Sunday's night game.

Earlier in the day during LSU's victory, there was a huge collision at first base, which looked for a second that Wilson may have needed to come out. But after a couple of seconds, she jumped right up, jogged to the dugout, and got ready to hit.

"It was a tough toss, and I did my best to hang on to it, and the runner and I got to the same place at the same time. Luckily I hung onto (the ball) just long enough to get the out."

"It knocked the wind out of me a little bit, but I was up to bat right away so I didn't really have time to think about it."

That resilience from a player is what a team needs to do significant damage during the postseason. Especially someone as important as the leadoff hitter and first baseman like Hallie is.

"At this stage of the game, you need everyone," Candrea said. "I think everyone going into Super Regionals feels pretty good about themselves. I think they finally understand how much of a battle it's going to be, and I think it's a valuable experience to go through something like this (weekend) and win it."

"Our team is not full of superstars," Wilson said as she tried to explain the team's chemistry. "Our team is full of the girls that were kicked to the curb and had to come right back. We're the fighters. Our year last year was just so tough, and we had to bounce back. To be where we are now is just such an honor. There is no overshadowing because we're all equals."

You may think of yourselves as equals, but this weekend was your weekend to shine Hallie.

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