New Enterprise softball coach Kate (Benton) Stump and her Lady Cats come into 2020 with a veteran team and a hunger to reach the state tournament once again.
Enterprise softball hasn’t played in the Class 7A State Tournament since 2015 and Stump said that she wants to change that this season.
“Our No. 1 goal as a team will always be to win a state championship,” Stump said. “For this team, though, I don’t think Enterprise has reached the state tournament in awhile, so that’s a big goal for us.
“None of these girls have had that opportunity and they don’t know how cool it is to be in the Elite 8 of the state. I really want that for them and if you get one state tournament appearance, I feel like they just keep on rolling.”
Stump has been an assistant at Enterprise for the past three seasons under former coach Mollie Mitchell and came to EHS after a successful college career that included two years at Troy and two at Shelton State.
At Troy, Stump was a star second basemen and ended up finishing her career with a school-record .364 career batting average. She also earned All-Sun Belt honors in both seasons.
At Shelton State, Stump was a National Junior College Athletic Association All-American in 2013 and 2014 and was the Alabama Community College Conference Softball MVP in 2014.
She was also an all-state player and set numerous school records at Northview in high school.
Stump’s first year as a head coach will see her team boast eight seniors, which she believes will be the foundation of the program she wants to build at EHS.
“We have a great senior class,” she emphasized. “All of them will play some type of role for us whether it be a leadership role or just a lot of playing time.
“I think the seniors can lead us in the right direction to where this team wants to go and what better way to do that than to have eight of them here to set the standard for what we want Enterprise softball to become.”
Stump said the big test for her and her coaching staff will be picking out the best lineup to help the team succeed.
“We have to figure out the right pieces to make our team the best it can be,” Stump said. “Our options are endless. We have kids on this team that can do it all and as a coaching staff we’ll have to put out different lineups and just figure out what works best for our team and for each individual and go from there.”