Southampton’s Hannah Wodecki breaks Westfield State softball’s single season RBI record

Southampton’s Hannah Wodecki broke the Westfield State softball single season RBI record earlier this week.

Southampton’s Hannah Wodecki broke the Westfield State softball single season RBI record earlier this week. PHOTO VIA WESTFIELD STATE ATHLETICS

Southampton’s Hannah Wodecki broke the Westfield State softball single season RBI record earlier this week.

Southampton’s Hannah Wodecki broke the Westfield State softball single season RBI record earlier this week. PHOTO VIA WESTFIELD STATE ATHLETICS

By GARRETT COTE

Staff Writer

Published: 04-19-2024 3:22 PM

WESTFIELD — As cliche as it sounds, records are truly made to be broken.

And Westfield State sophomore Hannah Wodecki didn’t just break an Owls softball record, she’s going to shatter it when all is said and done.

With still 10 regular season games remaining, and Westfield likely to have a couple of postseason ones on the docket as well, Wodecki broke the school’s single season RBI record after tallying four in a doubleheader with Albertus Magnus on Wednedsay afternoon.

Wodecki, a Southampton native and Class of 2022 graduate of Hampshire Regional, currently sits at 44 runs batted in, surpassing Kim Brennan’s mark of 40 as the most in a single campaign in the Owls’ 54-year history as a softball program.

“It’s definitely exciting,” Wodecki said. “I wasn’t even sure about the record at first, I didn’t know schools keep track of that kind of thing. I came into the season with not necessarily a high expectation for myself. I wanted to have fun and keep playing the same ball game I’ve always played. Having that title as the RBI record holder is a nice achievement to have for myself. With a lot of games left, it would be nice to make a gap to try and keep it a little bit longer.”

Last season, Wodecki was a first-year starter for Division 2 Franklin Pierce, and drove in 24 runs in 41 games in 2023. But Wodecki missed being home, so she transferred to Westfield State, conveniently the town over from Southampton.

Now, she commutes to school every day and can still be home to watch her younger sister, Hailey, compete on the softball diamond in her senior year at Hampshire Regional.

“There were a lot of factors that went into it, and it definitely wasn’t an easy thing for me,” she said. “I loved my time with Franklin Pierce and developed a good bond with all my teammates, but I felt a little far from home. Getting to spend that time with my family is a big thing, and my sister is finishing up her senior year so it’s nice to go to her high school games and be there to support her.”

Article continues after...

Yesterday's Most Read Articles

Elements Massage studio in Hadley abruptly closes after state order
Prominent immigration law firm in Northampton to close, affecting 30-plus employees
Charged UMass protesters marshal defense: Question crackdown, cite ‘bad-faith’ chancellor negotiations
Area property deed transfers, July 18
Smart-growth district plans along commercial corridor in Hadley forge ahead
Around the Hamptons: ‘Wild cows’ find way back to Easthampton home; local internet testing; Blueberry Supper in Westhampton

During Wodecki’s time with the Raiders, she was a force to be reckoned with at the high school level. Wodecki earned All-Valley League honors multiple times, collected three Western Mass. championships (2019, 2021, 2022) in as many tries (there was no tournament in 2020 due to COVID-19), won the Gary Stacey MVP award as a junior for her efforts in the title game, and capped off her career with the Gazette’s Softball Player of the Year award as a senior.

She was quite the decorated high school player, and it seems she’s carrying her success over to the collegiate level.

“Any time you can say you broke a record I think is really cool,” Wodecki said. “But you can’t get any RBIs if there’s nobody on base for you. So as much as I’m very happy about the record, it’s not only my record it’s the team’s record as well. I wouldn’t be able to do any of this without my teammates doing their job as well.”

Several times this year Wodecki has walked up to the dish in pressure situations, knowing her team is relying on her to drive in runs. Whatever her team needs from her, she steps up and delivers.

And while Wodecki admitted nerves do creep in sometimes during those big moments, she does her best to block out the outside noise and lock in to what’s in front of her.

It’s easier said than done, but she’s mastered it.

Her stress is relieved with small conversations to herself in between pitches. Wodecki creates a little game within the game, and her approach has turned her into one of the best hitters at the NCAA Division 3 level – logging a .479 batting average while striking out only five times in 28 games this season.

“I talk to myself when I’m up there: ‘Who’s on base? What’s the score? What kind of situation are we in? Do I need a sac fly or a line drive?’” Wodecki said. “In those crucial moments, in low-scoring games, I just try to focus on each pitch and trying to hit my pitch how I want.”

Westfield State (19-8-1) travels to Framingham State for a doubleheader with the Rams on Saturday. First pitch of the first game is slated for 1 p.m.