SALADO — Surrounded by her family and teammates, Salado senior Bailey Tindell signed her letter of intent to play softball for Lamar University, an NCAA Division I school, Tuesday afternoon.
“She’s been committed since she was a freshman,” said Alan Tindell, Bailey’s father. “It’s been a long wait to get to this date, so we’re excited to watch her get to the next level.”
“We’re excited to see her hard work pay off,” Bailey’s mother, Kristi Tindell, added.
Bailey has been playing softball since she was “itty bitty,” Alan said, but it wasn’t until she was 10 years old that she started to train as a pitcher.
After hearing inspiring words from both her high school coach and pitching coach, Bailey signed with her parents by her side and cheers from her friends and teammates.
“I love the coaches, I love the field, I love the team,” Bailey said of her choice to sign with the Lady Cardinals. “Everyone there is just super positive and they’re kind of a new program but they’re already doing great things.”
Bailey’s signing sets an example for the young Lady Eagles team.
“I think it sets the tone for the girls that it can be done if you work hard every single day and you do the right thing,” head softball coach Ashton Cooper said.
Bailey believes this opportunity is possible for her teammates.
“Never quit trying and always appreciate your parents because parents do so much for us,” Bailey said, “and they never really get the appreciation they deserve.”
“I’d like to give a special thank you to my pitching coach, Paul Hennigan,” she said.
Bailey has been working with Hennigan since she was 10. Before she had decided if she wanted to stick with pitching, he was the one who told her first, “You’re a pitcher now.”
“He decided that I was going to be great basically,” Bailey said.
Anxious for the season to start, she hopes to rally her team to make it to state this year before heading off to Lamar, where her goal is set on making it to the women’s College World Series one day.
But before she goes, Cooper wants her to know, “You only get four chances when you’re in college and then it’s over with, so make every moment count and enjoy the ride.”