SJO’s Dowling wins Illinois Gatorade Player of the Year

Local Sports

WCIA — St. Joseph-Ogden senior softball player Bailey Dowling is the Illinois Gatorade Player of the Year for the third straight time. The Alabama signee takes the award, despite not playing a game this season due to COVID-19 canceling high school spring sports in the state.

Dowling finishes her prep career with a state record 65 career home runs, just 11 shy of breaking the national mark. It’s a record she all but would have set, had there been a season. The 5-foot-10 shortstop also had 209 hits, 202 runs scored, 183 runs batted in and a 1.457 slugging percentage in her high school career.

“Bailey still works harder than anyone,” St. Joseph-Ogden head coach Larry Sparks said. “She is the best player on the field, but she aspires to make everyone around her better. She commands the utmost respect from every team she plays against.”

Dowling is now eligible to win the Gatorade National Softball Player of the Year.

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