Lyndsey Talbot has been busy.
The Central Methodist Lady Eagles are 29-13 overall and ranked No. 21 in the NAIA. Looking for their sixth straight conference title, they’re tied with Evangel in conference standings two games back of Grand View for first place. CMU hosts MidAmerica Nazerene tomorrow in a doubleheader.
She’s also scouting, recruiting and signing players to the first-ever State Fair softball program.
“It’s been softball, softball, softball,” Talbot said.
That’s one “softball” for every official signee so far. Cole Camp’s MacKenze Gudde, Lincoln’s Taylor Sanders and Makayla Sivils, a Crest Ridge graduate and Missouri Valley transfer, have announced their National Letter of Intents with Gudde signing Wednesday.
Gudde is a two-time All-State selection in softball, and was All-District this year in basketball.
While Gudde has a reputation of a power bat in the Kaysinger Conference – she hit a 3-run homer the game Talbot watched her play – Cole Camp’s ace will likely pitch at SFCC.
“I was very impressed when I first saw her throw,” Talbot said. “I’m excited to bring her in as a pitcher.”
Sanders is an All-Conference, District and Region selection and 4-year team captain at Lincoln. She was also academic All-Conference in basketball.
Talbot said she values the athleticism of multi-sport athletes.
“I was just talking with another coach about how kids are starting to specialize so soon, and I think it hinders them.”
Sanders also possess a hard-working attitude, according to Talbot. State Fair softball’s inaugural coach said how players present themselves is important, since she has limited time to evaluate softball skills.
“I’m extremely limited on days I can see girls play,” Talbot said. “Sometimes, you have to go off their demeanor, just how they play catch.”
Sivils, a Warrensburg native, played first base at Crest Ridge and wanted to attend State Fair after graduation. But she also wanted to play softball, so she opted for Missouri Valley. When SFCC announced their softball program, she wrote in to the school.
Having been on the Missouri Valley, but yet to play, Sivils will be a freshman on the field and a sophomore in the classroom. Sivils was an All-District first baseman for a Crest Ridge team that finished second in state.
“She brings experience and leadership,” Talbot said. “Going through a year of college, and knowing what it’s like to be on a team.”
Talbot expects more signings soon, having held indoor and outdoor tryouts since the SFCC Board of Trustees approved her hiring in January.
The SFCC Board of Trustees voted in December to add baseball, softball and men’s and women’s soccer in the 2016-2017 academic year.
Alex Agueros can be reached at 660-826-1000, ext. 1483 or on Twitter @abagueros2