TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY
By Chris Parsons / Sports Editor
CORBIN — A lot of times high school athletes will establish themselves before deciding on which college or university they plan to attend if given the opportunity.
Corbin High School’s Hannah Hart took a different approach.
Hart decided in the eighth grade that she wanted to play softball for Morehead State University, where her parents attended college. She made the decision official Monday when she signed a letter of intent to play softball for the Lady Eagles after her high school career.
Hart’s father, Corbin Lady Redhounds softball coach Chris Hart, told of how Hannah’s reverse approach most likely led to her work ethic and ultimate success.
“I’ve wanted to go to Morehead for a really long time because a lot of my family has gone there and it’s a really great school,” Hannah Hart said. “I knew it was a long shot, but I set a goal and I just went for it and it happened.”
Hart said she feels like making the decision early in the process (before her senior season even starts) will be a huge weight off her shoulders as she closes out her high school career.
“It takes a lot of pressure off me for the season, but it also makes me excited,” she said. “The fact I know that I’m going to be able to fulfill a dream after my high school career is over will make the season even more enjoyable.”
For Chris Hart, he said he has mixed feelings as a coach and father, but gave all the credit to Hannah Hart for the opportunity she has been presented with.
“Hannah decided that she wanted to do this at a young age and she has worked really hard to attain this goal,” coach Hart said. “Hannah has worked very hard, she’s the hardest worker I’ve ever seen, and the fact that she set this goal early in her life and I was able to help her achieve it is really special to me as her father and as her coach.
“I know what she’s done, but I can’t take any credit for where she has gotten,” he added. “She is the one that has put in the extra work and lifted the weights and just devoted herself to this craft. It’s good to see it pay off for her.”
Just how hard has the senior hurler worked to earn a spot at Morehead State?
She was named the Class 2A Player of the Year for the second year in a row after guiding the Lady Redhounds to a fastpitch program-best 21 wins last season, along with a 13th Region Tournament title game appearance, which in turn is only the second time that has happened at Corbin.
Hart was also named to Class 2A’a All-State First Team after winning 20 games in the circle for Corbin this season with 209 strikeouts in 195 innings. She also had a 1.58 ERA and only gave up 44 earned runs the entire season.
She also batted .467 on the season with 56 hits in 120 at-bats while driving in 24 runs, collecting 18 doubles while leading the team with an on-base percentage of .508.