• Lalo Mata

Top Dogs

Written By: Lalo Mata                                                                                                       

Published: April 6, 2020

Kelsey Hall

Top Dogs

Fresno State's softball team was on a mission to the World Series in Oklahoma City as they cracked the 25th spot in the last national softball rankings.

Kelsey Hall and the Dog Pound had a hot streak and left their season with a record of 21-4 , becoming the only team in California in the NCAA softball top 25 rankings. 

Kelsey put together one of the best high school careers that the Sacramento area has seen in a long time. Coming from Bella Vista High, Kelsey posted a .447 batting average backed up with an insane .527 OBP complimented with 24 round trips in just 105 games. 

To add to an impressive list of stats comes an even more impressive list of accomplishments and awards. Kelsey Hall had two Sacramento Bee All-Metro selections, two All-Capital Valley Conference selections as well as Defensive Player of the Year in 2019.

She is also one of the many products of “Results”, a training facility known for its baseball and softball player resume. Results produced big names like Dylan Carlson of the Cardinals, JD Davis of the Mets, and more pro, college, and elite high school players from our area.

What Impact do you want to have on Fresno State’s softball team?

“In my career, I want to continue the legacy of success that comes with being a Bulldog. And in my eyes, that means more than just performance on the field. I want to leave a legacy that will help shape the future athletes of Fresno State, on and off the field.”

Being able to start as a freshman at a top national program is hard in any sport, but Kelsey has always been known as the hardworking player that makes a difference in all aspects of her  softball career. It’ll be exciting to see the bounceback Kelsey and her team have in their chance for a trip to Oklahoma City. 

What’s it like playing for a top program in the nation? Do you feel stressed to play at a higher level?

“It’s a feeling that’s unmatched to play for a top program. Of course there’s a sense of pressure because you have to live up to the tradition, but that’s what every athlete should want. The best part of it all is that with playing at a top program, comes a passionate fan base. And man... playing in front of the RedWave, especially at home, is an experience like no other. It is somewhat stressful of course, but the thrill of playing at Margie Wright is worth all the hard work and sacrifices that come with playing at a top program.”

The dogs don’t sleep until the whole team eats; luckily, all of Fresno State’s Softball team is hungry to show what their program is made of.

What was the recruitment process like?

“My recruiting process was most definitely a unique one, as I was committed to a school prior to Fresno State. Once my recruitment reopened my junior year, I immediately began to reach out to several colleges I had prior interactions with. I reached out to Fresno & they showed immense interest. It was a coaching staff and program that I knew, together, we could accomplish great things.”

It’s always important to have that amount of trust and faith in a program when getting recruited to have confidence in knowing a program is a perfect fit for you.

What is your long-term goal in softball?

“My long term goal in softball is to be an All-American.”

Who helped you improve the most in your career?

“I had a lot of people help me grow into the person/athlete I am throughout my career this far.. I could make an entire list!! The two people that changed my life to the entirety though are Richie Anderson (my strength coach) & Denny Gomes (my travel ball coach/hitting instructor) Both of these people have developed me as an athlete, but most importantly have helped me grow mentally and emotionally amidst adversity.”

What advice would you give to young softball players looking to play in college?

“I would tell a young aspiring softball player to stay true to what THEY want out of their four years. Once you get to the next level, you are the one waking up for 6 am weights, grinding mentally and physically every single day. You need to make sure you are in an environment you love, and it is right for you.”

People should be excited for the Bulldogs in their return from the Corona year. Since the NCAA has allowed eligibility to all players, look for this team to make a run for it. An extra year to get better as players and as a team should only make them that much better. As for Kelsey, her gold glove plays and round trips will have to wait until next season.