After a long winter, our “Only One” reporter finally got out and spent last weekend as the only Black media member in the Jane Sage Cowles Stadium press box at the NCAA Minneapolis Regional softball tournament at the University of Minnesota. Again I seemingly wore my invisible suit as the passing-out-stats people passed me by on a couple of occasions. Before last weekend’s four-team double elimination tournament, I promised Gophers’ Tyler Walker and Madie Eckstrom that I would attend. The two previously were featured a couple of weeks ago in our Gopher 100 series.
“We are going to see a whole lot of each other,” exclaimed Walker. Continue Reading →
By Charles Hallman
There are approximately 100 African American and other student-athletes of color this school year at the University of Minnesota. In an occasional series throughout the 2013-14 school and sports year, the MSR will highlight these players. This week: Gopher softball players Tyler Walker and Madie Eckstrom
Juniors Tyler Walker and Madie Eckstrom are two members of a combined two-year recruiting class that helped Minnesota string together three consecutive 30-plus softball win seasons. Before last weekend’s league tournament play, Walker told the MSR that despite losing two of three to the conference regular season co-champs Wolverines in a series at Ann Arbor, “We can play with the top teams. We are one of the top
The U of M went unbeaten and won the Big Ten softball tournament in Evanston, Ill. last weekend. Continue Reading →
The leadoff hitter in baseball is mainly expected to be speedy and a regular on-base player. After her last home game of the season, we asked U of M shortstop Tyler Walker, who bats leadoff for the Gophers, if there is a similar expectation in college softball. “I think it’s different only because the dynamics of the game is different,” she briefly explained. “You use the same approach [as in baseball] — you want to get on base to start the game and get things going.”
Down a run at the U of M’s May 5 home finale, Walker led off the seventh inning. “I think my approach was to hit the ball hard, make contact, and I will find a hole,” she recalled. Continue Reading →