While we can all enjoy the spirit of competition as we watch two teams compete for a win, it's safe to say we can all agree when compassion and humanity come before that. This is something that the Division III college softball programs of Thomas More and Cumberland University demonstrated in a matchup earlier this year.
The Thomas More Saints were down 9-6 in the bottom of the seventh inning to the Cumberland Phoenix in their March 17 matchup. With no outs, a 2-1 count and the bases loaded, Becca Mowen accomplished what many of us have aspired to do in our backyards: She hit a walk-off grand slam to win the game for her team 10-9.
As her teammates rounded the bases, touched home and celebrated, Mowen collapsed to the dirt as she headed toward second base.
"It's more than a game."
— Joe Danneman (@FOX19Joe) June 13, 2023
"And, I heard my hamstring pop. Twice. And I could no longer run," Mowen told FOX19's Joe Danneman.
This moment stunned both teams, as Mowen needed to touch home in order for her run — the 10th run — to count and win the game.
"I see her get back up and she starts to try to run again and she falls over again. I'm like, 'OK, something is seriously wrong,'" said Ashley Evans, a player for Cumberland.
Evans said she then ran in with teammates to help walk Mowen around the bases. As they arrived to third base, they slowed down as Mowen gently patted third, and then proceeded to home.
This was an emotional moment for all who was there to watch it. No doubter for Becca. Class act by the two Cumberland players!
— Teresa L Gels (@tlgels) June 13, 2023
"Yeah, this probably is the top moment I've had, not just because of the game-winning grand slam, but, like, showing what this sport can do to people," Mowen said.
"You hear this all the time from athletes, but it's more than a game," Cumberland's Jacey Hatfield said. "And, I think that's just another great lesson I've learned through softball and I hope that we've influenced other people as well."
The Saints' season eventually came to and end, with a record of 27-19. Their last game of the season? May 5 against Cumberland, but this time they lost 13-9.
And, yes, Mowen hit another grand slam.
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