Republic’s Higgins Mo. Sports Commission Softball Player of the Year

A recent graduate of Republic High School was named the 2018-19 Softball Player of the Year by the Missouri Sports Commission. Julia Higgins, who was a catcher for the Lady Tigers, was presented with the award during a ceremony at the University Plaza Hotel & Convention Center in Springfield on Monday, June 17.
“It was obviously very formal,” Higgins said of the ceremony, “but we all had a really good time and it was so incredible to see all of the other talent from so many other sports and schools and everything they’d done too. You could tell that there was a kind of energy in the room with everyone waiting for the outcome of their area or sport.”
Higgins said she didn’t know she was going to receive the award until her name was announced.
“We had no idea who would get it when we went on stage,” she said. “I was happy, and kind of relieved, because I think we were all pretty anxious about it, no matter who got it.”
Asked about the decision to name her as Softball Player of the Year, Higgins said she only focused on doing her best when playing softball.
“All I did was go out every day and do everything I could for the program and my team,” she said, “and apparently they thought what I was able to do for them was deserving of the award, but I still really only see what I did as going out and doing my job.”
Wanting to be able to do her best, Higgins said she put extra effort into honing her abilities as a softball player.
“I’ve really tried to make what other people see as going the extra mile a part of my daily routine,” she said. “Working out on my own a lot, staying positive all the time, and working to exceed expectations 100-percent of the time has really become a mindset for me because I really love see- ing the results of ‘the extra mile.’”
An article on the Sports Commission website gave some of Higgins’ statistics.
“Higgins turned in one of the more memorable seasons in state high school softball history,” the article stated, “as she finished with 60 runs batted in, the second- most in a single-season in MSHSAA. She also hit 14 home runs, breaking the program’s record by one, and also had 12 assists, all of which earned Hig- gins Class 4 All-State and All-Region honors as well as the Co-Player of the Year in the Central Ozark Conference.” For her part, Higgins
credited her coaches, Lee Dishman and Allen Stolte, for her success as a softball player.
“I definitely have to thank my coaches for everything they’ve done for me since moving to Republic,” she said. “Dishman and Stolte have both pushed me to be better
every day, and I wouldn’t even be close to the ballplayer I am today without them. Dishman is not only the greatest coach I’ve ever had, but one of the best people I’ve ever had the honor of knowing, and he and his family have definitely made me better in every single way since we’ve known them. I can’t thank them enough
for what they’ve done in my life.”
Higgins graduated from Republic High School earlier this year and is going to attend Evangel Univer- sity in Springfield on a softball scholarship, an academic scholarship and several outside schol- arships. She plans to major in business and minor in pre-law.


Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


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