SIU's Harre has big hit to highlight strong senior season so far
Even in a career filled with honors and big moments, Shaye Harre recently found space for something she had not accomplished before.
On April 2, while locked in a battle with Illinois State in Normal, Harre blasted a grand slam in the top of the seventh inning to catapult Southern Illinois to a 7-5 win. The senior first baseman said that scenario was not one she had pulled off.
“I mean, I think it was just solid contact and I was out of box as soon as I hit it,” Harre told the Southwest Illinois News about the hit. “Once I saw it over, then it was a relief that it finally happened.”
Her clutch blast just added to an already stuffed statistics resume this season. Harre was in the top 10 in eight offensive categories, according to the Missouri Valley Conference website, as of April 6. She topped the league in on-base percentage at .576, and was second in slugging percentage at .679.
Those efforts are an extension of her excellent first three seasons at SIU. Last season, she was a first-team National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-Region pick and a second-team Academic All-American. Harre's on-base and slugging percentages ranked in the top 50.
A Nashville, Illinois, native, Harre said she got into softball from watching her sister, Shannon, who was a multisport athlete.
“I would watch her, so I was like, 'Hmm, OK, I want to do this,'” Harre said.
From there, softball became part of her routine, she said, with her biggest improvement coming in the way she works with her fellow players.
“I think honestly just becoming a better teammate and being able to communicate with your team," she said, "just bouncing off of each other and helping each other succeed, I guess."
Harre's big hit against Illinois State helped the Salukis win the three-game series with the Redbirds. It was also SIU's third-straight series win in MVC play this season, which had the Salukis atop the league on April 6 with a 7-2 record.
“We're meshing pretty good and a lot of communication and everyone's on their hot streak right now, so I feel we're headed in the right direction for the end of the season,” she said.
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