CULLMAN — Good Hope's Cara Goodwin was the only softball player from the state of Alabama to be honored when the National Fastpitch Coaches Association recently released its 2012 High School All-Region teams. The Raider was rewarded for a record-breaking junior season with a First Team selection as a pitcher in the South Region.
“It's just an overall reflection on everything she accomplished this year, that our team accomplished this year,” Good Hope coach Wayne Harris said. “She was the pitcher, her teammates got hits and runs, and we got wins.
“It's a big deal. I've never had a First Team player. I have a lot of proud feelings for what she's done.”
Goodwin is now eligible for inclusion on the NFCA's First Team, Second Team or honorable mention High School All-American squads, which will be announced June 26.
“I don't know any of the kids on the list, but it's an honor to be in the position she's in,” Harris said. “It'd be the icing on top of the cake if she was able to make the final cut. Speaking as her biased head coach, of course she deserves a fair chance.”
This is Goodwin's latest honor since the Raiders' school-record 43-7-2 campaign came to a close at the state tournament in May. She was tabbed the Alabama Sports Writers Association's Class 4A Pitcher of the Year nearly two weeks ago, accompanying her obvious selection as a First Team pitcher.
The now three-time All-State ace has produced mind-boggling numbers in every year of her prep career, and 2012 was no different. Goodwin not only broke school records and climbed the state record books in wins (43), strikeouts (525) and innings pitched (318 2-3), but she also tossed four no-hitters and 19 shutouts while sporting a squeaky-clean 0.86 ERA.
The UAB commit has been spending her summer pitching for the Birmingham Vipers' 16-and-under travel team. They qualified for the Amateur Softball Association's national tournament by winning a qualifier in Arkansas earlier this month and finished second out of 96 teams at the Scenic City 16's Summer Showcase in Chattanooga this past weekend.
The Vipers will travel to Denver, Colo., next week to participate in the 16th annual Louisville Slugger Independence Day Tournament. Almost 400 college coaches attended the exclusive showcase in 2011.
Rob Ketcham can be reached at 256-734-2131, ext. 257 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.