ATHENS, Ga. (BVM) – Sarah Gordon couldn’t have asked for more out of her freshman year with Louisville softball. She started all 56 games for the Cardinals and helped lead them to their best season since 2019 while batting .379 to go along with 11 home runs and 49 RBIs.
The Lexington, South Carolina native was rewarded with ACC Freshman of the Year honors, the first player in program history to do so.
“It’s crazy how much I learned from the coaches as well as my teammates and how that will help me the rest of my career and in life after,” Gordon said.
It’s hard to put into words just how impressive Gordon was as a freshman.
The first-team All-ACC catcher hit a team-high 12 doubles, was a perfect 8-for-8 on stolen bases, had 20 multi-hit games and led Louisville with 14 multi-RBI games. Gordon even went on an eight-game hitting streak which included a 14-game on-base streak.
TIE BALL GAME!!!
SARAH GORDON 🚀 🚀 🚀
— Louisville Softball (@LouisvilleSB) May 5, 2023
It’s no surprise that the former Gatorade South Carolina Softball Player of the Year hit the ground running as a freshman, but Gordon’s recent decision to enter the transfer portal likely came as a shock to many Cardinals fans.
“My time at Louisville was meant to happen,” Gordon said. “I met some of my lifelong best friends there and got to play alongside some amazing players who helped me become who I am today.
“I am forever grateful for the coaches and the support staff who helped me anytime I needed it and who stayed by my side the entire year.”
The decision to leave Louisville wasn’t an easy one, but Gordon is a woman of faith.
“I felt like God was leading me down another path and although I loved my time at Louisville, He had other plans in mind for me,” Gordon said.
Gordon said she seriously considered three schools but ultimately committed to Georgia on June 19 “due to the culture of the program.”
— sarah gordon (@sarahgordon008) June 19, 2023
The Bulldogs are coming off a strong 2023 campaign in which they were the No. 14 seed in the NCAA Tournament following an impressive 42-15 season. After sweeping through the Athens Regional, Georgia fell to No. 3-seeded Florida State in the Tallahassee Super Regional.
“The (Georgia) coaches were so welcoming and create such a supportive atmosphere that fosters a great environment there,” Gordon said. “I cannot wait to compete for a team that has so much in store for their program.
“I hope that I can help the team compete against the best teams in the country. I love getting the opportunity to play against the best and I believe Georgia can compete with anyone in the country.”
Part of the Bulldogs’ success last season was their catcher rotation that featured Lyndi Rae Davis and Marisa Miller who split catching duties in 2023. Davis (rising junior) made 30 starts behind the plate while batting .331 with 23 RBIs and Miller (rising sophomore) made 22 starts at catcher as a true freshman while batting .254 with 12 RBIs.
Gordon has experience at first base and as a designated player, but the competition at catcher next season will be fascinating to watch. Either way, Gordon is eager to learn from her teammates just like she did at Louisville.
“I want to learn from these veteran players as much as possible and grow into the best all-around softball player I can become there and I think that is possible with this coaching staff and players,” Gordon said.
No matter where Gordon ends up or what she accomplishes, she’ll never forget being an underestimated recruit due to her size.
“I grew up smaller than others and coaches told me I may want to look at smaller schools because of it,” Gordon said in June 2022.
Now playing in the SEC, arguably the most competitive softball conference in the country, Gordon is more focused on impacting the next generation than dwelling on the past.
“I hope to leave a mark not just on the softball field, but in the lives of little girls who watch this sport,” Gordon said. “I want to show them that no matter where you grew up or your size, that you can accomplish anything they set their minds to.”