3 things to know about Kaylee Tow as Alabama softball begins postseason play
Kelly Kretschman, Jackie Traina, Bailey Hemphill, Haylie McCleney, Stephanie Van Brakle Prothro, Kayla Braud and Raegan Dykes. Those are some of the notable Crimson Tide players in the rich, winning history in the 26 years of Alabama softball.
Next to join that list is fifth-year senior first baseman Kaylee Tow, who opted to use her extra year of eligibility for a final season with the Crimson Tide.
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"In the last five years, I have changed the most in just not taking things so seriously," said Tow. "If anything happens – good or bad – it's God's plan, and this last year has be no panic and no stress because I know good things happen to good people."
Tow, the lone player honored during this year's senior day ceremony, has plenty of memorable moments and will be looking for more as the fifth-ranked Crimson Tide (41-10, 16-8 SEC) takes on Missouri (33-19, 12-11) in the quarterfinal round of the 2022 SEC Tournament at 1:30 p.m. CT on SEC Network.
Here are three things to know about Tow:
Reliable and dependable
Tow has started in 251 career games. Despite injuries in her career, the hard-nosed first baseman has not let that affect her.
"She (Tow) has dealt with a hip labrum surgery for 18 months," said Alabama coach Patrick Murphy. "She never says a word about it."
This season, Tow has started four games while registering a 18-game reached base streak in that span including 10 multi-RBI games.
Full trophy case, decorated career
Tow is a thee-time NFCA All-American (second team 2018-19, third team 2021), two-time All-SEC (first team 2018; second team 2021), three-time CoSIDA Academic All-American (2019-21) and has earned two SEC Player of the Week honors.
"She's been one of the most clutch hitters we've ever had," said Murphy.
Tow led the Crimson Tide to a four-run comeback victory over Mississippi State with three runs scored and a solo home run earlier this season. She blasted a three-run home run in the win over UCLA in last year's Women College World Series.
'One of the most competitive we've ever had'
Murphy shared a story about Tow's freshman year in which her opening line to the team was, "I am not afraid of anything."
"She's one the most competitive players we've ever had, has never complained about anything," said Murphy. "On and off the field, she's been a great kid to have in the program."
Tow is often referred to as "grandma" or "great grandma" on the team as the lone fifth-year player, and says she fully embraces the role of being a leader and takes a great sense of pride when underclassmen perform.
"I want them to have an amazing career and the experience that I had," said Tow. "If there is anything I can do everyday to make them better, that's some I really enjoy."
Reach Brett Greenberg at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow @74talk on Twitter.