In her final year as a Drexel pitcher, Hillary Allen and the Drexel softball team came within one win of making it to the postseason. Although they didn’t make it, their heart and determination are to be applauded.
“Obviously we wanted it to go the other way,” Allen said. “Our last game that could have gotten us [to the postseason], we played awesome and we went 10 innings. It stinks that it didn’t fall our way, but we were close, [but] that’s not the last memory I’ll [have]at Drexel. I’ll look at the friends I have here and my overall experience … that didn’t make or break my time at Drexel.”
As a senior, Allen ended the year with a 10-15 record, sporting a 3.48 ERA. She also had the most appearances of any pitcher (33), the most games started (25) and the most complete games (17). Her numbers scream “ace of the pitching staff,” but Allen sees it differently.
“We all split pitching time,” Allen said. “Wherever the coach needs me is where I’m going to go. If they need me on the sidelines cheering [the team] on — whatever they need me to do. I don’t look at it as more an ace spot or not an ace spot; I just look at it [as] what can I do for the team.”
Allen has always loved softball, a sport her father first introduced her to.
“I started playing when I was really young,” Allen said. “When I was born my dad had a baseball glove and a helmet already in my crib, so I started playing when I was around 5. I went from tee ball to softball, and I loved it.”
After Allen’s first visit to campus as a young teen, it was her dream to come to Drexel.
“I did a lot of softball clinics [at Drexel] from the time I was a freshman in high school,” Allen said. “I just really loved the school, how it was in the city, and the softball team seemed to be such a close-knit group of girls.”
She said she was honored just to come to Drexel and play softball. She said didn’t expect to have the success she has had.
“Having the opportunity to play here was honestly a dream come true,” Allen said. “It was so much more than I expected, and I got to meet some really great players and some awesome coaches. The experience here will last a lifetime.”
Allen said that one of the things she loves about softball is the close-knit team. She believes that a team that is close off the field will succeed on the field and that it’s important to get along with one’s teammates.
While Allen’s teammates will miss her, she leaves a strong legacy of hard work.
“I think that our class was very dedicated and put heart into everything we did,” Allen said. “It kind of shows that we are hardworking, whether it was in the classroom or outside of the classroom, on the field or off the field. We had goals that we wanted to accomplish no matter [what got in the way].”
Allen has taken sophomore pitcher Shelby Taylor under her wing in her final year. Taylor and Allen have a friendly relationship, which will no doubt help Taylor to be a leader in the years to come.
“We both bounced ideas off of each other,” Allen said. “If I needed help she would be there for me, and if she needed help I would be there for her. The staff in general was always there for each other, whether it was something big or small, on the field of off the field. I think it’s great to have.”